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Full text of "Biographies of good wives:"

S. G. & E. L. ELBERT 







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fbscitlttii few ELLA SMITH JiaSRT_ «88 
N<? EATHABIM B. COMAH 






Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2012 with funding from 

Boston Library Consortium Member Libraries 



http://archive.org/details/biographiesofgooOOchil 



FRANCIS & 00. 'S 

CABINET LIBRARY 



OF 



CHOICE PROSE AND POETRY. 



GOOD WIVES. 



BIOGRAPHIES 



O F 



GOOD WIVES: 

BY 

L. MARIA CHILD. 

AUTHOR OF "THE MOTHER'S BOOK ;" "LETTERS FROM NEW YORE," 
"FLOWERS FOR CHILDREN ;" ETC. ETC. 



Yes, it's a Wearisome thing to be a wife. 

Allan Ramsay. 

When a good woman 
Is fitly mated, she grows doubly good, 
How good so e'er before. 

Knowles. 



A NEW EDITION, REVISED. 



NEW-YORK: 

C. S. FRANCIS & CO., 252 BROADWAY, 
boston: 

J. H. FRANCIS, 128 WASHINGTON-STREET. 

18 4 6. 



Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1846, 

BY C. S. FRANCIS & CO. 

In the Clerk's Office of the District Court for the Southern District of New-York. 



Printed by 

MTJNROE & FRANCIS, 

Boston. 



CONTENTS 





Page 


Dedication- 


7 


Preface ...... 


9 


Ackland, Lady ..... 


215 


Anne, Queen ...... 


. 208 


Arria, wife of Foetus 


259 


Biron, Lady, wife of Sir John Biron . 


. m 


Blackwell, Mrs. . 


162 


Blake, Mrs. ...... 


. 124 


Calphurnia, wife of Pliny 


179 


Chelonis, wife of Cleombrotus 


. 176 


Collingwood, Lady .... 


280 


Dorset, Countess of 


. 209 


Eleanor, Queen . . 


213 


Eponina, wife of Julius Sabinus 


. 261 


Fanshawe, Lady .... 


80 


Flaxman, Mrs. ..... 


. 113 


Fletcher, Mrs. ..... 


54 


Grotius, Mme. . . . . . 


. 149 


Howard, Mrs. ..... 


154 


Huber, Mme. ..... 


. 202 


Huntingdon, Countess of 


210 


Hutchinson, Mrs. ..... 


. 25 


Johnson, Lady Arabella .... 


241 


Judson, Mrs. ...... 


. 223 


Klopstock, Mme. .... 


182 


Lavater* Mme. . . 


. 17 



VI 



ALPHABETICAL CONTENTS 



Lavalette, Mme. 


• 


• 


268 


Lafayette, Mme. 


• 


• • 


. 264 


Luther, Mme. 


• 


• 


129 


Mary, Queen . 






. 206 


Nithsdale, Countess of . 


• 


• 


276 


Oberlin, Mme. . • 






. 141 


Panthea, wife of Abradatas 


• 


. 


170 


Reidesel, Baroness 






. 219 


Reiske, Mme. 


• 


• 


252 


Ross, Mrs. 






. 212 


Schiller, Mine. 


• 


• 


281 


Segur, Countess 






. 267 


Spurzheim, Mme. 


• 


. 


278 


Sybella, Duchess of Normandy 






. 214 


Yonder Wart, Baroness 


. 


• 


164 


West, Mis. 






. 238 


Wieland, Mme. 


• 


. 


192 


Winthrop, Mrs. 






. 243 



TO 

MY HUSBAND, 

iff ij i U 23 It 

IS AFFECTIONATELY INSCRIBED, 
BY ONE WHO, THROUGH EVERY VICISSITUDE, 

HAS FOUND 

IN HIS KINDNESS AND WORTH, 



MOST CONSTANT INCENTIVES TO DUTY. 



PREFACE 



It was my original intention to have entitled this 
volume, The Wives of Distinguished Men. But 
great men have sometimes had bad wives ; and it 
seemed undesirable to perpetuate the memory of 
such. This decision was not influenced by any 
wish to make women appear better than they re- 
ally are ; but by the simple conviction that such 
examples could produce no salutary effect. 

Even the most ordinary writer has some influ- 
ence on mankind, and is responsible to his God for 
the use he makes of that influence. I may sin 
against taste — I may be deficient in talent — but it 
shall ever be my earnest endeavour to write 
nothing, that can, even in its remotest tendency, 
check the progress of good feelings and correct 
principles. 

I have been told that I did not moralize enough, 
or explain my own opinions with sufficient fulness. 
To this I can only answer, that I am describing 
the minds of others, not my own. It seems to me 



10 PREFACE. 

that the beauty of biography consists in simplicity, 
clearness, and brevity. I wish to give faithful por- 
traits of individuals, and leave my readers in free- 
dom to analyze their expression. 

It will doubtless be observed that there is not a 
large proportion of American wives in this volume. 
I can recollect many of my countrywomen, who 
have discharged the duties of this important relation 
ih a manner worthy of the highest praise. The 
wife of Doctor Ramsay was intelligent and highly- 
cultivated. She educated her children, fitted her 
sons for college, and copied for her husband seve- 
ral of his voluminous works. The companion of 
the patriot Josiah Quincy, was an excellent and 
noble-spirited woman, deservedly beloved by her 
husband. "She entered with ardour into his politi- 
cal course, submitted cheerfully to the privations it 
induced, and encouraged him with all her influ- 
ence to risk the perils, to which his open, undis- 
guised zeal in the cause of his country, was thought 
to expose him and his family." Mrs. John Adams 
was a woman of dignified manners, kind feelings, 
and powerful character; her influence over her 
husband was so great, that he is said to have been 
guided by her counsels, when he would listen to 
no one else. But such cases as these furnish no 
details for the biographer, or any one strong point, 
on which to found a striking anecdote. I know 
that good wives and excellent husbands abound in 



PREFACE. 11 

every part of the Union ; but it must be remem- 
bered that I could only give a sketch 6f those 
whose virtues were in print ; and though there ex- 
ists among us elements of female character, which, 
in time of need, would become sublime virtues, our 
national career has hitherto been too peaceful and 
prosperovis to call them into action in a manner 
likely to secure a place in history. Then it must 
be allowed that we inherit a large share of English 
reserve, added to that strong fear of ridicule, which 
is the inevitable result of republican institutions ; 
we are, therefore, rather shy of publicly expressing 
our attachments in glowing terms ; in our distrust 
of French exaggeration we approach the opposite 
extreme. 

But since domestic love and virtue really have 
an abode with us, it matters little whether the 
world be informed of their full extent • it is our 
business to cherish, not to display them. 

The subject I have chosen, and the scenes on 
which I have dwelt, with such obvious heartiness, 
will lay me open to the charge of sentiment and 
romance. It is true that 1 have something of what 
the world calls by these names ; and I shall pro- 
bably retain it as long as I live. I am more afraid 
of believing too little, than of believing too much, 
and have no inclination to sacrifice happiness to 



12 PREFACE. 

philosophy. In a word, I like superstition better 
than scepticism, and romance better than policy. 

If this book convince one doubting individual 
that there really is such a thing as constant, disin- 
terested love, which misfortune cannot intimidate, 
or time diminish ; — if it teach one mistaken votary 
of ambition that marriage formed from conscien- 
tious motives makes human life like a serene sky, 
" where as fast as one constellation sets, another 
rises;" — if it reveal to one thoughtless wife some 
portion of the celestial beauty there is in a perfect 
union of duty and inclination; — if it prevent one 
young heart from becoming selfish and world- 
worn ; — if it make one of the frivolous, or the pro- 
fligate, believe in a holy affection, that purifies 
those who indulge it, blesses them on earth, and 
fits them to be angels in heaven — then it has not 
been written in vain. 

For the sake of national prosperity, as well as 
individual happiness, we shall do well not to forget 
these lessons. 

There is one point of view, in which the pre- 
valence of worldly ambition may affect our nation- 
al character most powerfully. If women estimate 
merit entirely by wealth, men will obtain money, 
even at the risk of their souls : hence, dishonour- 
able competition, and fraudulent cunning, and the 



PREFACE. 13 

i 
vile scramble for office, by which true freedom has 
already become well nigh suffocated. Popular in- 
stitutions, above all others, afford ample scope for 
disinterested virtue ; but we must remember that 
they likewise open the widest field for busy, in- 
triguing selfishness; the amount of evil is always 
in exact proportion to the degree of good which we 
pervert. 

The actions and motives of each individual do, 
more or less, affect the character and destinies of 
his country. If, for the sake of temporary indul- 
gence, we yield to what we know is wrong, we are 
not only closing the avenues by which heaven 
communicates with our own souls, but we are hast- 
ening those mighty results, on which depend the 
fate of governments. 

Men may smile at these auguries — but just as 
surely as effects follow causes, the preponderance 
of selfish policy will destroy the republic ; for in. 
this manner, ever since the beginning of time, 
has glory passed away from the nations. Neither 
the strength nor the subtil ty of man can prevail 
against the justice of God. 

Our mothers were help-mates indeed ; and so are 
many of their daughters; but it is well to be on 
our guard, lest the household virtues become 
neglected and obsolete. 

I shall be asked, with a smile, what I hope to do 
to alter the current of public feeling, and change 
the hue of national character? Truly, I expect 
2 



14 PREFACE. 

to do but little. My efforts remind me of a story 
often repeated by a valued friend: " When I was 
a small boy," says he, "I often plunged my little 
hoe into a rushing and tumbling brook, on the bor- 
ders of my father's farm, — thinking, in the child- 
ish simplicity of my heart, that I could stop the 
course of its impetuous waters." 

Gentle reader, I have put my little garden-hoe 
into a mighty stream — and perchance the current 
will sweep it to oblivion. 



GOOD WIVES 



MADAME LAVATEE, 

WIFE OF JOHN GASPER LAVATER. 

The celebrated John G. Lavater was pastor of St. 
Peter's Church, in Zurich, Switzerland. He published 
several volumes on religious subjects, and a great many 
sermons. He had a remarkable facility in writing poetry ; 
his verses were harmonious, unaffected, and often vigor- 
ous. But his chief claim to distinction was his famous 
essay on Physiognomy, which has been translated into 
almost all languages. .Lavater was a most amiable and 
pleasing enthusiast. He combined uncommon penetra- 
tion with a simplicity of character, that amounted almost 
to childlike credulity; and the overflowing kindness of 
his disposition made him universally beloved. He was 
born in 1741, and died in 1801, in consequence of a 
wound from a French soldier, at the taking of Zurich. 
His private journal will best describe his domestic happi- 
ness : 

" January 2d. My wife asked me, during dinner, 
what sentiment I had chosen for the present day. I an- 
swered, Henceforth, my dear, we will pray and read to- 
gether in the morning, and choose a common sentiment 
for the day. The sentiment I have chosen for this day 
is : ' Give to him that asketh of thee, and from him 
that would borrow of thee, turn not thou away.' ' Pray 
how is this to be understood ?' said she. I replied, 4 Lite- 
rally.' ' That is very strange indeed !' answered she. I 
2 



18 



GOOD WIVE S. 



said, with some warmth, < We at least must take it so, 
my dear ; as we would do, if we had heard Jesus Christ 
himself pronounce the words, " Give to him that asketh 
of thee," says he, whose property all my possessions are. 
I am the steward and not the proprietor of my fortune.' 
My wife merely replied, that she would take it into con- 
sideration. 

" I was just risen from dinner, when a widow desired 
to speak with me ; I ordered her to be shown into my 
study. ' My dear sir, I entreat you to excuse me,' said 
she ; ' I must pay my house-rent, and I am six dollars 
too short. I have been ill a whole month, and could 
hardly keep my poor children from starving. I must 
have the six dollars to-day or to-morrow. Pray hear me, 
dear sir.' Here she took a small parcel out of her pock- 
et, untied it, and said, l There is a book enchased with 
silver; my husband gave it to me when I was betrothed. 
It is all I can spare ; yet it will not be sufficient. I part 
with it with reluctance, for I know not how I shall re- 
deem it. My dear sir, can you assist me ?' I answered, 
1 Good woman, I cannot assist you;' so saying, I put my 
hand, accidentally or from habit, into my pocket ; I had 
about two dollars and a half. ' That will not be suffi- 
cient,' said I to myself; ' she must have the whole sum ; 
and if it would do, I want it myself.' I asked if she had 
no patron, or friend, who would assist her. She answer- 
ed, ' No ; not a living soul ; and I will rather work 
whole nights, than go from house to house. I have been 
told you were a kind gentleman, [f you cannot help me, 
I hope you will excuse me for giving you so much trou- 
ble. I will try how I can extricate myself. God has 
never yet forsaken me ; and I hope he will not begin to 
turn away from me in my seventy-sixth year." My wife 



MME. LAVATER. 19 

entered the room. O thou traitorous heart ! I was angry 
and ashamed. I should have been glad if I could have 
sent her away under some pretext or other ; because my 
conscience whispered to me, ' Give to him that asketh of 
thee, and do not turn away from him who would borrow 
of thee.'' My wife, too, whispered irresistibly in my ear. 
' She is an honest, pious woman, and has certainly been 
ill; do assist her, if you can.' Shame, joy, avarice, and 
the desire of assisting her, struggled together in my 
heart. I whispered, ' I have but two dollars by me, and 
she wants six. I will give her something, and send her 
away.' My wife, pressing my hand with an affectionate 
smile, repeated aloud what my conscience had been 
whispering, ' Give to him who asketh thee, and do not turn 
aivay from him who would borrow of thee.' I asked her 
archly, ' whether she would give her ring to enable me 
to do it?" 'With great pleasure,' she replied, pulling 
off her ring. The good old woman was too simple to 
observe, or too modest to take advantage of the action. 
When she was going, my wife asked her to wait a little 
in the passage. ' Were you in earnest, my dear, when 
you offered your ring ?" said I. ' Indeed I was,' she re- 
plied : ' Do you think I would sport with charity ? Re- 
member what you said to me a quarter of an hour ago. 
I entreat you not to make an ostentation of the Gospel. 
You have always been so benevolent. Why are you 
now so backward to assist this poor woman ? Did you 
not know there are six dollars in your bureau, and it will 
be quarter day very soon ?' I pressed her to my heart, 
saying, ' You are more righteous than I. Keep your 
ring. I thank you.' I went to the bureau, and took the 
six dollars. I was seized with horror because I had said, 
* I cannot assist you.' The good woman at first thought 



20 GOOD WIVES, 

it was only a small contribution. When she saw that it 
was more, she kissed my hand, and could not, at first, 
utter a word. i How shall I thank you !' she exclaimed : 
1 Did you understand me ? I have nothing but this book ; 
and it is old.' ' Keep the book and the money,' said I 
hastily ; and thank God, not me. I do not deserve your 
thanks, because I so long hesitated to help you.' I shut 
the door after her, and was so much ashamed that I 
could hardly look at my wife. ( My dear,' said she, 
' make yourself easy ; you have yielded to my wishes. 
While I wear a golden ring, (and you know 1 have sev- 
eral) you need not tell a fellow creature in distress that 
you cannot assist him.' I folded her to my heart, and 
wept. 

January 23d, 1769. ' My servant asked me after din- 
ner, whether she should sweep my room. I said, ' Yes ; 
but you must not touch my books or papers.' I did not 
speak with the mild accent of a good heart. A secret 
uneasiness, and fear that it would occasion me vexation, 
had taken possession of me. When she had been gone 
some time, I said to my wife, ' I am afraid she will 
cause some confusion up stairs.' In a few moments my 
wife, with the best intentions, stole out of the room, and 
told the servant to be careful. ' Is my room not swept 
yet !' I exclaimed, at the bottom of the stairs. Without 
waiting for an answer, I ran up into my room ; as I en- 
tered, the girl overturned an inkstand, which was stand- 
ing on the shelf. She was much terrified ; I called out 
harshly, ' What a stupid beast you are. Have I not po- 
sitively told you to be careful ?' My wife slowly and 
timidly followed me up stairs. Instead of being ashamed, 
my anger broke out anew. I took no notice of her ; run- 
ning to the table, lamenting and moaning, as if the most 



MME. LAVATER. 21 

important writings had been spoiled ; though in reality 
the ink had touched nothing but a blank sheet, and some 
blotting paper. The servant watched an opportunity to 
steal away, and my wife approached me with timid gen- 
tleness. ' My dear husband !' said she. I stared at 
her, with vexation in my looks. She embraced me — I 
wanted to get out of her way. Her face rested on my 
cheek for a few moments — at last, with unspeakable ten- 
derness, she said, i You will hurt your health, my dear.' 
I now began to be ashamed. I was silent, and at last 
began to weep. ' What a miserable slave to my temper 
I am ! I dare not lift up my eyes. I cannot rid myself 
of the dominion of that sinful passion.' My wife re- 
plied, * Consider, my dear, how many days and weeks 
pass away, without your being overcome by anger. Let 
us pray together.' I knelt down beside her; and she 
prayed so naturally, so fervently, and so much to the pur- 
pose, that I thanked God sincerely for that hour, and for 
my wife." 

November, 1772. " My dear wife is still very ill ; she 
is however a lamb in patience and goodness ; full of tran- 
quillity of mind, and without self-will, reposing in the lap 
of heavenly love." 

January, 1773. " I awoke a little before seven o'clock, 
and addressed myself to the paternal goodness of God. 
I heard the voice of my dear wife, went to her, and we 
blessed each other with the tenderest, sweetest, and most 
innocent affection, discoursing on the fate which, almost 
to certainty, will befall us the present year." 

January 6tk. " A bottle was overturned and broken 
to pieces. A tranquil, gentle, smiling look from my wife, 
restrained my rising anger." 

January 12th. " No one can be more averse to the ap- 



22 GOOD WIVES. 

plication of the rod than I am myself. I have never chas- 
tised my son myself; fearing I should do it with too much 
passion, I have always left his punishment to my more 
gentle wife. My child has the best of hearts, yet he 
sometimes needs the rod. The advice to leave children 
to the bad consequences of their actions looks very 
specious on paper ; but whoever has the care of children 
will know that, among a thousand cases, this is scarcely 
possible in one instance. For instance, it is impossible 
always to remove scissors and penknives from the table ; 
and if it were possible, I would not do it. External cir- 
cumstances shall not accommodate themselves to my 
children ; on the contrary my children must learn to ac- 
commodate themselves to circumstances. They shall not 
learn not to touch a penknife where there is none ; but 
they must learn not to touch one where there are ten. 
If my child disobey me, I give him a slap on the hand ; 
which, however hard it may be, is, after all, less than the 
least hurt he might receive by handling the penknife. I 
would gladly leave him to the consequences of his disobe- 
dience, but what if he should put out an eye, or disable 
a hand ! I lately found a razor full of notches, and was 
going to put myself in a passion ; but I pacified myself 
instantly. I asked, in a serious tone, ' My son, have you 
had this razor V ' Yes, papa.' — I have nothing more at 
heart than that my child should never tell lies ; I there- 
fore said, * I shall not punish you this time, because you 
have readily told me the truth.' Children will certainly 
never tell lies except from fear of punishment. " 

January 12th. " I spoke with my wife of our children. 
I said ' I have a presentiment that they will not grow old, 
though they are in general very healthy. ' It gave me 
great satisfaction to hear her reply, with much resigna- 



MME. LAVATER. 23 

tion, * The will of the Lord be done. Thank God ! they 
have not been created in vain. They are our children, 
aid the children of their Heavenly Father, whether they 
live or die." 

January \&th. " When I was called to breakfast, the 
beautiful group, which had assembled almost moved me 
to tears. My dear wife was in the bed ; little Henry at 
her left hand, and Nannette on her foot-stool upon two 
chairs before the bed. She was giving them their soup. 
I took a pencil, and sketched that family scene on paper. 
My wife said, smiling, ' You forget one person that be- 
longs to the group, and is sharing our pleasure.' My 
joy was complete. God bless you, darlings of my heart, 
God bless you ! I tried to imprint this scene indelibly 
on my mind. Such things are so extremely sweet in re- 
collection." 

January 30th. " My dear wife was not well. Only 
a god-like patience could bear what she endures. My 
little Nannette shouted when I entered the room. The 
little, innocent, lovely child ! I was obliged to struggle 
against my wish to take her, lest I should lose time. I 
wrote a little while, but could resist no longer. I took 
her up and carried her to her mother and brother. Some 
trifles vexed me. My wife observed it, and silently gave 
me her hand. ' I will be good,' said I, with a filial voice ; 
and my serenity returned." 

June 3d. " ..My wife waked me, saying, < It is seven 
years to-day since we were married.' I told her it should 
be celebrated by a little festival for the children. 

" Some things that detained me in the morning, tempt- 
ed me to grow impatient, because I wanted to have a lit- 
tle pleasure with my family. At length, I was at liberty 
to do so. We went to the apartment where my wife and 



24 GOOD WIVES. 

I had first knelt together in prayer ; we recalled to mem- 
ory all the particulars of our wedding day, running over 
the seven years which, notwithstanding all our trials, we 
had spent so happily. We related to our boy how r we 
had been united, and he listened with much interest, 
which filled our hearts with pleasure. We gathered all 
the flowers we could find, strewing some of them on the 
lap of Nannette, whom I pushed forward in her little car- 
riage, while Henry, whose hair I adorned with the rest, 
was drawing the vehicle. Their precious mother looked 
on with pleasure. I ordered Henry to be dressed in his 
Sunday garments, and read to him a little song, which, 
notwithstanding I had composed it in a great hurry, drew 
a pearly tear of joy from his mother's eyes. I left the 
happy circle with reluctance." 



MRS. LUCY HUTCHINSON, 

WIFE OF COLONEL HUTCHINSON. 

Mrs. Lucy Hutchinson was the daughter of Sir Allen 
Apsley, Lieutenant of the Tower of London, during the 
reign of Charles the First. In the memoir of her hus- 
band she praises highly the integrity, benevolence, and 
mutual affection of her parents. Among many instances 
of their kindness, she tells us, " When Sir Walter Ra- 
leigh and Mr. Ruthin were prisoners in the Tower, my 
mother suffered them to make rare experiments in chem- 
istry at her cost ; partly to comfort and divert the poor 
prisoners, and partly to gain the knowledge of their ex- 
periments, and the medicines, to help such poor people as 
were nqt able to procure physicians. By these means 
she acquired a great deal of skill, which was profitable to 
many all her life. To all the prisoners that came into 
the Tower, she was as a mother. If any were sick, she 
visited and took care of them, and made them broths and 
restoratives with her own hands." 

Her father had a very decided dislike for those gay 
young gentlemen, who merely know how to court the 
ladies, and study the fashion of their dress ; he consid- 
ered usefulness and learning as the true tests of respecta- 
bility. From these intelligent, judicious, and thoroughly 
well-bred parents, Lucy Apsley probably derived the 
sedate, and somewhat matronly character, by which she 
was early distinguished. As her mother had several 
2* 



26 GOOD WIVES, 

sons, and earnestly desired to have a daughter, her birth 
was an event of great joy ; and the natural fondness in- 
spired by the helpless little innocent was increased by the 
superstitious nurse, who pronounced her to be too deli- 
cate and beautiful to live. Something of additional im- 
portance was likewise ascribed to her, because previous 
to her birth her mother dreamed that a star descended 
from the heavens and rested in her hand. She was in- 
deed lovely and remarkably intelligent, and her parents 
spared no pains in cultivating the intellectual faculties, 
with which she was endowed. As her nurse was a 
Frenchwoman, she learned to speak French and English 
at the same time. At four years old, she read perfectly 
well ; and her memory was so great, that she could re- 
peat almost exactly the sermons she heard. At seven 
years of age, she had eight tutors, in languages, music, 
dancing, writing, and needlework ; but study was the only 
thing she really loved ; and she pursued it with a degree 
of eagerness, that threatened to be prejudicial to her 
health. In Latin, she outstripped her brothers, although 
they were very clever, and exceedingly industrious. For 
female employments and elegant accomplishments, she 
had less taste than her mother wished ; and she held the 
usual sports of children in great contempt. She says, 
" When I was obliged to entertain such children as came 
to visit me, I tired them with more grave instructions 
than their mothers, and plucked all their babies to pieces, 
and kept them in such awe, that they were glad when I 
entertained myself with older company." From her 
mother's instructions she derived strong religious feelings 
and principles, which continued with her through life. 
When very young, this miniature woman used to employ 
a portion of every Sabbath in exhorting the domestics 



MRS. LUCY HUTCHINSON. 27 

of the family upon serious subjects. It seems, however, 
that she was not entirely destitute of the feelings and 
habits usually observable in youth ; for she says, " I was 
not at that time convinced of the vanity of much conver- 
sation not scandalously wicked ; I thought it no sin to 
learn or hear witty songs, amorous poems and twenty 
other things of that kind ; wherein I was so apt, that I 
became a confidant in all the loves that were managed 
by my mother's young women." She even alludes to an 
unequal, but transient attachment, as among the "extra- 
vagances of her youth. " 

Colonel John Hutchinson, whom this young lady after- 
ward majried, was the son of Sir Thomas Hutchinson, 
and Lady Margaret, daughter of Sir John Biron of New- 
stead, one of tfie ancestors of Lord Byron. He is repre- 
sented as a gentleman of graceful person, highly cultiva- 
ted mind, and very prepossessing manners ; and as he 
was the eldest surviving son of his father, he was a match 
alike desirable to mothers and daughters. He passed 
through the usual routine of education prescribed for gen- 
tlemen of that period, and was distinguished for his lite- 
rary attainments, his skill in active and graceful exerci- 
ses, and his very correct taste in music. Soon after he 
left the university, he determined to travel in France ; 
and as some delay occurred in forming the necessary ar- 
rangements, he was advised to make a short visit to 
Richmond, where the prince at that time held his court. 
Crowds of gay company were, of course F attracted to the 
place, and a young gentleman of Mr. Hutchinson's pre- 
tensions received abundant attentions from the wealthy, 
the witty, and the beautiful. It chanced that Sir Allen 
Apsley had a daughter placed at Richmond, for the pur- 
pose of acquiring skill in music This child was born 



28 GOOD WIVES. 

five years after her serious sister Lucy, and being of an 
active and playful disposition, was the general favourite 
of the family. Mr* Hutchinson took particular delight 
in her sprightly conversation and lively music. The lit- 
tle girl had the keys of her mother's house, which was 
about half a mile distant, and once or twice, when she 
had occasion to go there, she asked Mr. Hutchinson to 
accompany her. One day, while he was there, he found 
a few Latin books on an old shelf, and when he asked 
whose they were, he was informed that they belonged to 
her elder sister, who was about to be married, and had 
gone into Wiltshire with her mother, in order to complete 
some necessary arrangements. Mr. Hutchinson had a 
contempt for frivolous conversation and unmeaning gal- 
lantry, and the ladies thought him rathe* indifferent to 
their charms. But it so happened that his curiosity was 
greatly excited concerning Miss Lucy Apsley ; and the 
more questions he asked, the more he regretted that he 
had never seen her, and that she had gone away on such 
an errand. The ladies of her acquaintance told him how 
very studious and reserved she was ; adding several an- 
ecdotes, which they thought would redound to her disad- 
vantage ; but Mr. Hutchinson had a great respect for 
good sense and information in women, and the stories 
they told produced a different effect from what they in- 
tended. He lost no opportunity of talking about the lady ; 
and began to wonder at himself that his heart, which had 
heretofore kept so cool, should now be so much interested 
in a stranger. His wife, speaking of this circumstance 
in his memoir, says, " Certainly it was of the Lord, who 
had ordained him, through so many providences, to be 
yoked with her in whom he found so much satisfaction." 
One day, when there was a great deal of company at 



MRS. LUCY HUTCHINSON. 29 

the house, some one sung a song, which was much ad- 
mired. A gentleman present observed it was written by 
.a lady in the neighbourhood. Mr. Hutchinson, " fancy- 
ing something of rationality in the sonnet, beyond the 
customary reach of a she-wit, said he could scarcely be- 
lieve it was a woman's." The gentleman asserted that 
the verses were written by Miss Lucy Apsley ; and being 
a great admirer of the author, he was very enthusiastic 
in her praises. Upon this, Mr. Hutchinson said, " I can- 
not rest until this lady returns. I must be acquainted 
with her." His informant replied, " You must not ex- 
pect that, sir. She will not be acquainted with gentle- 
men. However this song may have stolen forth, she is 
extremely unwilling to have her perfections known. She 
lives only in the enjoyment of herself, and has not the 
humanity to communicate that happiness to any of our 
sex." 

The information of this reserved humour pleased Mr. 
Hutchinson more than all he had heard ; and his thoughts 
became completely occupied with the hopes of seeing her. 
At last, news was brought that Mrs. Apsley and her 
daughter would return in a few days. The messenger 
had some bride laces in his pocket, and, for the sake of 
fun, he allowed the company to suppose the young lady 
was married. Mr. Hutchinson became very pale, and 
was obliged to leave the room. He began to think there 
was some magic in the place, which enchanted men out 
of their right senses. His affectionate biographer says, 
" But it booted him not to be angry at himself, or to set 
wisdom in her reproving chair, or reason in her throne 
of council; the sick heart could not be chid, or advised 
into health." 

The next day it was ascertained that the tidings of her 



30 GOOD WIVES. 

marriage was a mere hoax ; and as soon as she arrived, 
Mr. Hutchinson, under the pretence of escorting her lit- 
tle sister, went to her father's house, and obtained a sight 
of the being who had so much occupied his thoughts. 
Judging from the engraved portrait of Mrs. Hutchinson, 
she must have been eminently beautiful. At all events, 
the eager lover was not disappointed in her appearance ; 
and she, at first sight, was " surprised with an unusual 
liking in her soul for a gentleman, whose countenance 
and graceful mien promised an extraordinary person." 

At their first interview, there was something of mel- 
ancholy negligence about her ; for her parents, displeased 
that she had refused several advantageous offers, had 
urged her to a marriage for which her heart had no in- 
clination. From a sense of duty, she tried to bring her 
feelings to their wishes ; but was finally obliged to con- 
fess that she could not, without destruction to her happi- 
ness. Mr. Hutchinson, being informed of these circum- 
stances, and finding her willing.to encourage his acquaint- 
ance, believed that the same secret power had given them 
a mutual inclination for each other. He visited her 
father's house daily ; and she was often his companion in 
the pleasant walks proposed by the family in the sweet 
spring season, then advancing. 

The ladies were a little piqued at Mr. Hutchinson's 
preference. With the usual petulance of narrow minds, 
they ridiculed those high qualities, which they could not 
comprehend, and magnified such little defects as were 
nearer on a level with their own habits of thought ; her 
neglect of ornament in her dress, and her love of study 
were the constant themes of their animadversion. Mr. 
Hutchinson smiled, and sometimes mixed a little good- 
natured sarcasm with his answers. He was successful 
in his love, and was therefore too happy to be angry. 



MRS. LUCY HUTCHINSON. 31 

His wife says, " I shall pass by all the little armorous 
relations, which if I would take pains to relate, would 
make a true history of a more handsome management of 
fove than the best romances describe ; but these are to be 
forgotten as the vanities of youth, not worthy to be men- 
tioned among the greater transactions of his life." It is 
only to be recorded that never was passion more ardent, 
and less idolatrous. He loved her better than his life, 
with inexpressible tenderness and kindness; and had a most 
high, obliging esteem for her ; yet still considered honour, 
religion, and virtue, above her ; nor ever suffered the 
intrusion of such a dotage, as should blind him to her 
imperfections : these he looked upon with such an indul- 
gent eye, as did not abate his love and esteem for her, 
while it augmented his care to blot out all those spots, 
which might make her appear less worthy of the respect 
he paid her ; and thus indeed he soon made her more 
equal to him than he found her. 

It was not her face that he loved ; her virtues were his 
mistress ; and these, like Pygmalion's statue, were of his 
own making ; for he polished and gave form to what he 
found with all the roughness of the quarry about it ; but 
meeting with a compliant subject for his own wise gov- 
ernment, he found as much satisfaction as he gave, and 
never had occasion to number his marriage among his 
infelicities. The day that the friends, on both sides, met 
to conclude the marriage, she fell ill of the small pox ; 
her life was in desperate hazard, and for a long time the 
disease made her the most deformed person that could be 
seen ; yet he was nothing troubled about it, but married 
her as soon as she was able to quit the chamber ; when 
the priest and all that saw her were affrighted to look on 
her; but God recompensed his justice and constancy by 



32 GOOD WIVES, 

her entire recovery. One thing is worthy of imitation in 
him ; though he had as strong an affection for her as 
ever man had, he did not declare it, till he had first 
acquainted his father ; and after that he would make no 
engagement but what his love and honour bound him in ; 
wherein he was more firm, than all the oaths in the 
world could have made him, notwithstanding many pow- 
erful temptations of wealth and beauty; for his father 
before he knew his son's inclinations, had concluded 
another treaty for him, much more advantageous to his 
family, and worthy of his liking. The parent was as 
honourably indulgent to his affection, as the son was strict 
in the observance of his duty ; and at length, after about 
fourteen months' various exercise of his mind in the pur- 
suit of his love, the thing was accomplished, to the full 
content of all : on the third day of July, he was married 
to Miss Lucy Apsley, at St. Andrew's Church, in Hol- 
borne." He was twenty-three years of age, and she was 
eighteen. 

For two years after this union, Mr. Hutchinson enjoy- 
ed the dignified retirement of an English country-gentle- 
man ; and as religious controversy at the time interested 
the whole nation, the study of theology was largely min- 
gled with his literary pursuits. 

At first they resided about ten miles from London, to 
which Mrs. Hutchinson's habits and early associations 
rendered her extremely attached. But their two oldest 
sons were twins ; and as the family increased rapidly, it 
was deemed expedient to remove to a cheaper part of the 
country. They therefore retired to his estate in Ovvthorpe, 
Nottinghamshire. 

Here they had not long remained before the discord of 
civil war which had long been heard in the distance, 



MRS. LUCY HUTCHINSON. 33 

sounded its fearful alarm through the land. The dread- 
ful massacres of Ireland in 1641 aroused Mr. Hutchinson 
to the state of public affairs. He entered warmly into 
the disputes existing between the King and Parliament; 
but while he zealously maintained the pretensions of the 
latter, he had an earnest desire that bloodshed should be 
avoided, if possible. Public opinion in England was 
then strongly, not to say fiercely, directed against popery. 
Mr. Hutchinson's first manifestation of party spirit was 
to persuade the clergyman to deface the images, and break 
the painted windows of the parish church, in obedience to 
the orders of Parliament. His next step was to prevent 
ammunition from being carried out of the comity for the 
use of the king; and he conducted this affair with a de- 
gree of firmness, moderation, and courtesy, not a little 
remarkable in an enthusiastic partisan about twenty-five 
years old. 

Such open demonstration of his political opinions, of 
course, made him an object of suspicion to the Eoyalists, 
and various attempts were made to seize his person. 
When the parliament collected forces under the command 
of Lord Essex, he joined the army ; and having resolved 
to defend the town and castle of Nottingham against the 
King's troops, he was chosen governor of that place. His 
wife followed him, sharing all his counsels and his' dan- 
gers. 

The preservation of Nottingham was of great impor- 
tance to the Parliament; for if the enemy had possessed 
themselves of it, all communication between the northern 
and southern parts of the kingdom would have been cut off. 
The undertaking was hazardous ; for the inhabitants of the 
town were more than half favourable to the royal cause ; the 
Parliamentry army was too distant to give prompt relief 



34 GOOD WIVES. 

in case of necessity ; and the half ruined castle was badly 
fortified, and worse provided, for a siege. Mrs. Hutch- 
inson says, " Nothing but an invincible courage, and a 
passionate zeal for the interests of God and his country, 
could have engaged my husband in a work of so much 
difficulty. His superior officer contented himself with 
the name of authority, and left Mr. Hutchinson to order 
all things; the glory of which he hoped to assume, if 
they succeeded, and if they failed, he thought to throw 
the blame upon him who contrived them. Mr. Hutchin- 
son knew all this ; yet he was so well persuaded that 
God called him to undertake a defence for this place, that 
he cast by all other considerations, and cheerfully re- 
signed his interests and his life to God's disposal ; though 
in all human probability he was more likely to lose, than 
to save them." 

Besides the unavoidable perils of his situation, Colonel 
Hutchinson had to contend with the various feuds and 
petty dissensions constantly arising among the officers ; 
the insolence, cunning, and hatred of the royalists in the 
town; and the obstinate fanaticism of his own party, who 
were " so pragmatical, that no act, and scarcely a word, 
could pass without being strictly arraigned and judged at 
the bar of every common soldier's discretion, and there- 
after censured and exclaimed at." 

Though Colonel Hutchinson may seem, to readers of the 
present day, quite rigid enough in his opinions, he could 
not go to all the lengths, which some of his austere com- 
panions considered necessary for sound doctrine ; and 
there was a noble frankness in his nature, that forbade 
hypocritical compliance with absurd opinions, or unim- 
portant forms. 

" Among other affected habits of the Puritans, few of 



MRS. LUCY HUTCHINSON. 35 

them wore hair long enough to cover their ears, and 
many cut it very close around their heads, with so many 
little peaks, as Was something ridiculous to behold. From 
this circumstance, the name of Roundhead was scornfully 
given to the whole Parliament party. It was very ill 
applied to Mr. Hutchinson, who had a fine head of curl- 
ing hair, and wore it in a becoming manner. The godly 
of those days would not allow him to be religious, be- 
cause his hair was not in their cut, or his words in their 
phrase. Many of them were weak enough to esteem 
such insignificant circumstances as of more consequence 
than solid wisdom, piety, and courage, which brought 
real aid, and honour to their party. But as Mr. Hutchin- 
son chose not them, but the God they served, and the 
truth they defended, their weakness, ingratitude, and 
censures, with which he was abundantly exercised all his 
life, never tempted him to forsake them in anything 
wherein they adhered to just and honourable principles." 

In addition to the difficulties with which Mrs. Hutch- 
inson was surrounded, it happened, amid the inevitable 
horrors of civil war, that her brother, Sir Allen Apsley, 
commanded a troop of horse in the king's service, and 
was frequently on duty in the same part of the country 
where her husband was fighting for the Parliament. It 
is, however, to the honour of the English people, that this 
civil contest was carried on for years with few instances 
of personal violence. 

The Puritan Colonel lived on very cordial terms with 
his Cavalier brother-in-law. Protected by mutual passes, 
they often visited each other, and exchanged various 
civilities, without any attempt on either side, to persuade 
the other from the performance of what he considered his 
duty 



36 GOOD WIVES. 

During this trying period, when her husband was en- 
dangered by treachery within the castle, and warfare 
without, Mrs. Hutchinson behaved most admirably. Shut 
up with him in the garrison, she enlivened him by her 
cheerful fortitude, soothed him with her tenderness, and 
assisted him by her advice. Her heroism and energy 
encouraged the troops; and she herself attended upon the 
sick and dressed the wounds of the sufferers, both cap- 
tives and conquerors. 

Her eldest daughter died in Nottingham Castle ; being 
a weakly child, in consequence of the fatigue and anxiety 
her mother had undergone. 

In the description of this ancient castle there are some 
particulars, which possess historical interest. " It was 
built upon a high rock, overlooking the chief streets of 
the town. Nature had made it capable of very strong 
fortification, but the buildings were ruinous and uninhab- 
itable. Upon the top of all the rock was a strong tower, 
which they called the Old Tower. This was the placed 
where Queen Isabel, mother of Edward the Third, was 
surprised with her paramour Mortimer ; who, by secret 
windings and hollows in the rock, came up into her 
chamber from the meadows below. At the entrance of 
this rock was a spring, which is called Mortimer's well, 
and the cavern, Mortimer's hole. 

" Behind the castle, was a place called the Park ; but 
then it had neither deer nor trees, except one, which was 
almost a prodigy ; for from the root to the top there was 
not one straight twig or branch ; some said it was planted 
by Eichard the Third, and resembled him that set it. 

" There were many large caverns, in which a great 
magazine and hundreds of soldiers might have been dis- 
posed, and kept secure from any danger of firing the pow- 



MRS. LUCY HUTCHINSON. 37 

der by mortar-pieces shot against the castle. In one of 
these places, it is said that David, a Scotch king, was 
kept in cruel durance, and with his nails scratched on the 
walls the history of Christ, and his twelve apostles." 

Sir Richard Biron, the relative of Col. Hutchinson, 
sent a messenger to persuade him to leave Nottingham, 
on the plea that holding out a castle against his king was 
rebellion of so high a nature, that no favour could be ex- 
pected, however earnestly his friends among the royalists 
might urge it; but that if he would return to obedience, 
he might not only save his forfeited estates, but have 
whatever reward he pleased to propose : to w r hich Col- 
onel Hutchinson replied that " he had too much Biron 
blood in his heart to betray or quit a trust he had under- 
taken ; and that he scorned to sell his faith for base re- 
wards, or the fear of losing his estate, which his wife was 
quite as willing as himself to part with." 

Colonel Hutchinson remained in this garrison until the 
close of the war ; at which time his health and strength 
were much impaired by the hardships to which he had 
been exposed. On arriving at his deserted house in 
Owthorpe, he found it in a most ruinous and desolate sit- 
uation ; the neighbouring garrisons having robbed it of 
everything that could be carried away ; and the debts he 
had incurred in the service of the public, deprived him of 
the power of making necessary repairs. This state of 
things was peculiarly uncomfortable, because he was at 
that time afflicted with the gout, and often unable to leave 
his chamber for weeks. His wife says : " Here we had 
a notable example of the victorious power of his soul over 
his body. One day, when he was in the saddest torture 
of his disease, certain soldiers came and insolently de- 
manded money and provisions in the town. He sent for 
3 



38 GOOD WIVES. 

them and told them he would not suffer such wrong to be 
done to his tenants. Seeing him in a weak condition, 
they became saucy, and told him he had no longer a right 
to command them. Being heartily angry, he felt not 
that he was sick, but started out of his chair, and beat 
them from the house and the town ; and returned laugh- 
ing at the wretched fellows and himself, wondering what 
was become of his pain. But it was not half an hour 
before the vigour which his spirits had lent his frame, re- 
tired to its noble palace the heart ; this violent effort 
made his limbs more weak than before, and his suffering 
returned with such violence, that we thought he would 
have died in this fit." 

Colonel Hutchinson was returned to parliament for the 
town, which he had so bravely defended. He was after- 
wards appointed a member of the High Court of Justice, 
for the trial of the King ; and, after long hesitation, con- 
curred in the sentence of condemnation against the un- 
fortunate Charles the First. 

He always disliked the character of Cromwell, and 
considered his government as an unjust usurpation ; yet 
he had the magnanimity to make known to the Protec- 
tor's friends a plot, which had been laid for his assassin- 
ation. Cromwell expressed abundant gratitude for this 
generosity, and tried every means to tempt the regicide 
officer into his service. Colonel Hutchinson told him 
frankly that he did not like any of his measures, and be- 
lieved they were all tending to the destruction of the coun- 
try. Cromwell seemed not at all offended with this plain- 
ness, but, with tears in his eyes, complained that others 
had urged him on to rash and violent acts, alike incon- 
sistent with his own wishes, and the liberties of the peo- 
ple. But notwithstanding this appearance of friendship 



MRS. LUCY HUTCHINSON. 39 

and candour, Cromwell secretly feared and disliked the 
man, who had so boldly reproved his tyranny at the very 
,time that he saved his life ; and he was making prepara- 
tions to arrest him, when " death confined his vast ambi- 
tion to the narrow compass of a grave." 

Daring the administration of the Protector, Colonel 
Hutchinson lived in almost unbroken retirement at 
Owthorpe. He spent his time in gardening, superintend- 
ing the education of his children, administering justice 
among his neighbours, and in making a choice collection 
of pointing and sculpture ; in forming this cabinet, he 
purchased several articles belonging to the late unfortu- 
nate king, who had been a most liberal patron of litera- 
ture and the arts. 

After the death of Cromwell, Colonel Hutchinson was 
again elected member of parliament. The people, find- 
ing a military tyrant no better than an hereditary one, 
were then becoming zealous for the restoration of the 
royal family ; and of course those who voted for the death 
of the late king were placed in a condition of some peril. 
Colonel Hutchinson met the emergency of the times with 
a more firm and manly spirit than most of his associates. 
When the subject was debated in the house, he said, 
" That for his actings in those days, if he had erred, it 
was the inexperience of his age, and the defect of his 
judgment, not the malice of his heart ; that he had ever 
preferred the general advantage of his country to his own ; 
and if the sacrifice of him could conduce to the public 
peace and settlement, he freely submitted his life and for- 
tunes to their disposal : that the great debts he had incur- 
red in public employments proved that avarice had not 
urged him on, and gave him just cause to repent that he 
ever forsook his own blessed quiet to embark in such a 



40 GOOD WIVES. 

troubled sea, where he had made shipwreck of all things 
but a good conscience. " 

In order to quiet the anxiety of Mrs. Hutchinson, he 
assured her that no one would lose or suffer by the ex- 
pected change of government. But this assurance failed 
to tranquillize her fears. She said she could not live to 
see him a prisoner. She persuaded him to leave his own 
house for a place where he could more readily make his 
escape. His friends advised him to give himself up, 
thinking he might by that means save his estates ; but 
she declared herself ready to endure poverty in its worst 
forms, rather than trust him to the generosity of his poli- 
tical enemies ; and she urged this point with such ear- 
nest entreaty, that he promised to do nothing without her 
consent. For the first and only time in her life, she ven- 
tured to disobey him ; she wrote a letter in his name to 
the speaker of the house. The letter was favourably re- 
ceived ; 'this encouraged his friends, who were present, 
and they spoke so kindly and effectually in his favour, 
that his punishment was limited to a discharge from 
parliament, and from all offices civil and military for- 
ever. 

After this decision, he returned to Owthorpe, where he 
spent nearly a year in the enjoyment of his quiet and 
tasteful pursuits. 

But Charles the Second was not disposed to trust the 
loyalty of those who had beheaded his father. Colonel 
Hutchinson was at last seized, upon suspicion of being 
concerned in a treasonable plot, and was conveyed by an 
\eA o- nrd to London. His wife, with her oldest son 
and d luehter, accompanied him. " Mrs. Hutchinson 
was exceedingly sad, but he encouraged and kindly chid 
her out of it, and told her it would blemish his innocence 



MRS. LUCY HUTCHINSON. 41 

for her to appear afflicted ; that if she had but patience 
to wait the event, she would see it was all for the best, 
and bade her be thankful that she was permitted to ac- 
company him ; and with diverse excellent exhortations 
cheered her, who could not be wholly abandoned to sor- 
row while he was with her." 

The prisoner was committed to the Tower, and 
treated with great harshness. The chamber he occupied 
is said to have been the same where Edward the Fifth 
and his little brother were murdered by the command of 
Richard. The room leading to it was large and dark, 
without windows, where the portcullis of one of the in- 
ward gates was drawn up and let down, and under which 
a guard was placed every night. There was a tradition 
that the Duke of Clarence was here drowned in a butt of 
malmsey. This part of the building was called the 
Bloody Tower. The door by which these two rooms 
communicated with each other was not allowed to stand 
open during the night, although Colonel Hutchinson and 
his servant were suffering under a very painful disease, 
occasioned by bad diet, and a comfortless residence. 

For several weeks his wife was not permitted to visit 
him ; but she would not rest until her earnest prayers, 
aided by the powerful intercession of her brother, were 
granted. It was her wish to take lodgings in the Tower ; 
but this was refused. She was obliged, in the depth of 
winter, to walk from her residence every day to dinner, 
and back again at night. 

This was a forlorn kind of existence ; but the Colonel 
endured it with perfect content and cheerfulness. " When 
no other recreations were left him, he diverted himself 
with sorting and shading the shells, which his wife and 
daughter gathered for him ; with these he was as much 
3* 



42 GOOD WIVES. 

pleased as with the richest engraved agates and onyxes, 
wherein he had formerly great delight, when he recre- 
ated himself from more serious studies. His fancy 
showed itself so excellent in arranging and dressing 
these shells, that none of us could imitate it, and the 
cockles began to be admired by several persons that saw 
them. These were but his trifling diversions ; his busi- 
ness and continual study was the Scripture, which the 
more he conversed in the more it delighted him ; inso- 
much that his wife having brought some books to enter- 
tain him in his solitude, he thanked her, and told her 
that if he should continue in prison as long as he lived, 
he would read nothing but the Bible. His wife bore all 
her own toils joyfully for the love of him, but could not 
be otherwise than very sad at the sight of his undeserved 
sufferings. He would very sweetly and kindly chide 
her for it ; and tell her if she were but cheerful, he 
should think this suffering the happiest thing that ever 
befel him. He would also bid her rejoice that the Lord 
supported him ; and remind her how much more intole- 
rable it would have been, if the Lord had allowed his 
spirits to sink, or his patience to fail under this. One 
day when she was weeping, after he had said many 
things to comfort her, he gave her reasons why she 
should be assured that the cause would revive, because 
the interest of God was so much involved in it. She 
said, " I do not doubt the cause will revive ; but notwith- 
standing your fortitude, I know this will conquer the 
weakness of your constitution, and you will die in 
prison." He replied, " 1 think I shall not ; but if I do, 
my blood will be so innocent, that I shall advance the 
cause more by my death than I could by all the actions 
of my life." 



MRS. LUCY HUTCHINSON. 43 

Although no formal accusation was ever brought 
against Colonel Hutchinson, and no evidence specified 
as the ground of his detention, he was imprisoned in the 
Tower ten months. His energetic and affectionate wife 
laboured without ceasing for his deliverance : and his 
oppressors often found themselves embarrassed and con- 
founded by her eloquent arguments. But the most ur- 
gent solicitations, aided by all the powerful intercession 
she could procure, were of no avail. 

He was suddenly removed from the Tower to San- 
down Castle, in Kent ; where he was confined in a very 
damp unwholesome apartment, with another prisoner of 
the most vulgar and brutal manners. Even this, he en- 
dured with meekness and magnanimity, conversing with 
his wife and daughter " with as pleasant and contented a 
spirit as ever in his whole life." When she told him she 
feared they had placed him on the sea-shore in order to 
transport him to Tangier, he answered, " and if they 
should, there is the same God at Tangier as at Ow- 
thorpe. Prithee, trust me with God ; if he carry me 
away, he" will bring me back again." 

The damp apartment in which Colonel Hutchinson 
was confined brought on illness ; but the sufferings of 
the body, as well as the mind, he endured with the same 
strong humility. His wife watched over him with the 
most devoted, self-forgetting love. Sir Allen Apsley, at 
last, obtained permission for him to walk on the beach a 
certain time every day ; but this indulgence came too 
late to renovate his strength. 

Toward the close of the year, Mrs. Hutchinson was 
obliged to go to Owthorpe, to bring away the children 
she had left there, and to obtain necessary supplies for 
her husband. " She left with a very sad heart, dreading 



44 GOOD WIVES. 

that while he lay so ready on the sea-coast, he might be 
shipped away to some barbarous place during her ab- 
sence. He comforted her all he could, and the morning 
she went away, he said, " Now I myself begin to be 
loath to part." Yet he encouraged her with his usual 
cheerfulness, and sent his son along with her. At the 
time of her departure he seemed very well, and was so 
confident of seeing Owthorpe again, that he gave her di- 
rections concerning planting trees, and many other things 
belonging to the house and gardens. A few days after, 
he returned from his walk on the sea-beach with his 
daughter, and complained of a shivering and pain in his 
bones. So long as he was able to sit up, he read much 
in the Bible ; and on looking over some notes on the 
Epistle to the Romans, he said, ' When my wife returns, 
I will no more observe their cross humours ; but when her 
children are all near, I will have her in the chamber with 
me, and they shall not pluck her out of my arms. Dur- 
ing the winter evenings she shall collect together the ob- 
servations I have made on this Epistle since I have been 
in prison.' " 

As he grew worse, the doctor feared delirium, and ad- 
vised his brother and daughter not to defer anything they 
wished to say to him. Being informed of his condition, 
he replied with much composure, " The will of the Lord 
be done ; I am ready." He then gave directions con- 
cerning the disposal of his fortune, and left strict injunc- 
tions that his children should be guided in all things by 
their mother ; " And tell her," said he, " that as she is 
above other women, so must she on this occasion show 
herself a good Christian, and above the pitch of ordinary 
minds." 

While he was speaking to them, his pulse grew very 



MRS. HUTCHINSON. 45 

low; yet lie said to the physician, " I would fain know 
your reason for thinking I am dying. My head is well ; 
my heart is well; I have no pain or sickness anywhere." 
The doctor, much amazed, answered that he should be 
glad to find himself deceived. Soon after, his mouth be- 
came convulsed, and he spoke no more ; except when 
some one iu the room mentioned his wife, he said, " Alas, 
how she will be grieved !" Then, with a sigh, his spirit 
departed, leaving his countenance as calm and happy as 
it had looked in the pleasantest moments of his life. 

He died on the 11th of September, 1664, in the forty- 
ninth year of his age ; after eleven months of severe 
imprisonment. The body, according to his request, was 
buried at Owthorpe. As the funeral procession moved 
on, the people were much affected, considering him the 
victim of injustice and oppression. In one town only 
were any insults offered by the political enemies of the 
deceased. 

Four sons and four daughters survived him ; and for 
their edification Mrs. Hutchinson wrote the memoir of 
her husband, which has since been published by their 
descendants. The book might with propriety be called 
the History of Her Own Times ; for it is in fact a very 
philosophical view of the state of parties in England at 
that period, and of the causes which produced them. In 
her brief sketches of public men she evinces singular 
discrimination and clearness of mind ; and considering 
how dearly her best affections were united with the inter- 
ests of one party, her candour and impartiality are re- 
markable ; but so large a portion of the work is occupied 
with details of the petty feuds and factions of the day, 
that, as a whole, it can be interesting to but few, even of 
English readers. 



46 GOOD WIVES. 

Her husband is always mentioned with romantic ten- 
derness, and deep sensibility. She evidently loved him 
with her whole soul ; and when he was gone, she was a 
widow indeed. 

An address to her children forms an introduction to the 
Memoir ; in which she thus writes : " I who am under 
a command not to grieve at the common rate of desolate 
women, while I am studying which way to moderate my 
woe, and, if it were possible, to augment my love, can find 
out none more just to your dear father, or more consoling 
to myself, than the preservation of his memory ; which 
I need not gild with such flattering commendations as 
the hired preachers equally give to the truly and the no- 
minally honourable ; an undrest narrative, speaking the 
simple truth of him, will deck him with more substantial 
glory, than all the panegyrics the best pens could ever 
consecrate to the virtues of the best men. To number 
his virtues is to give the epitome of his life, which was 
nothing else but a progress from one degree of virtue to 
another. His example was more instructive than the 
best rules of the moralists ; for his practice was of a 
more divine extraction, drawn from the Word of God, 
and wrought up by the assistance of his spirit. He had 
a noble method of government, whether in civil, military, 
or domestic administrations ; which forced love and re- 
verence even from unwilling subjects, and greatly en- 
deared him to the souls of those who rejoiced to be go- 
verned by him. He had a native majesty that struck 
awe into the hearts of men, and a sweet greatness that 
commanded love. He was naturally attached to the mi- 
litary employment, for he understood it well, and it suit- 
ed the activity of his temper. Never was a man more 
loved or reverenced by those that were under him. He 



MRS. HUTCHINSON. 47 

was very liberal to them, but ever chose just times and 
occasions to exercise it. I cannot say whether he were 
more truly magnanimous, or less proud. He never dis- 
dained the meanest person, or flattered the greatest. 
Wherever he saw wisdom, learning, or other virtues in 
man, he honoured them highly ; but he never blindly 
gave himself up to the conduct of any master. He had 
a sweet courtesy toward the poor, and often employed 
many spare hours with the common soldiers and labour- 
ers, but so ordered his familiarity that it never decreased 
respect.- He took pleasure in wit and mirth, but that 
which was mixed with impurity he never could endure. 
Of all falsehood he most hated hypocrisy in religion ; 
either to comply with changing governments or persons, 
without a real persuasion of conscience, or to practise 
holy things for the sake of interest, or the applause of 
men. He never professed friendship where he had it 
not, or disguised aversion, or hatred, which indeed he 
never had toward any party, or person, but only to their 
sins. At the same time that he conquered an enemy, he 
cast away all ill-will, and entertained only thoughts of 
compassion and love. He that was a rock to all assaults 
of might and violence, was the gentlest easy soul to 
kindness, that the least warm spark of that melted him 
into anything that was not sinful. He was as dutiful a 
son, as dear a brother, as affectionate a father, as good a 
master, and as faithful a friend, as the world ever had ; 
yet in all these relations he had no indulgence for vice 
or folly pertinaciously pursued ; but the more dear any 
person was to him, the more he was offended at anything 
that might diminish the lustre of their glory. 

"His affection for his wife was such, that whoever 
would form rules of kindness, honour, and religion, to be 



49 GOOD W1VE9. 

practised in that state, need no more, but exactly draw out 
his example. Man never had a greater passion or a more 
honourable esteem for woman ; yet he was not uxorious, 
and never remitted that just rule which it was her honour 
to obey ; but he managed the reins of government with 
such prudence and affection, that she who would not de- 
light in such honourable and advantageous subjection, 
must have wanted a reasonable soul. He governed by 
persuasion, which he never employed but in things 
profitable to herself. He loved her soul better than her 
countenance ; yet even for her person he had a constant 
affection, exceeding the common temporary passion of fond 
fools. If he esteemed her at a higher rate than she 
deserved, he was himself the author of the virtue he 
doated on ; for she was but a faithful mirror, reflecting 
truly, though dimly, his own glories upon him. The 
greatest excellence she had was the power of apprehend- 
ing, and the virtue of loving, his. All she had, was 
derived from him. A likeness that followed him every- 
where, till he was taken to the regions of Jight, and now 
she is but at best his pale shade. So liberal was he to 
her, and of so generous a temper, that he hated the men- 
tion of severed purses. His estate was so much at her 
disposal that he never would receive an account of any- 
thing she expended When she ceased to be young and 
lovely, he showed her the most tenderness. He loved her 
at such a kind and generous rate as words cannot express : 
yet even this, which was the highest love any man could 
have, was bounded by a superior feeling; he regarded 
her not as his idol, but as his fellow-creature in the Lord, 
and proved that such an affection far exceeds all the 
irregular passions in the world. 

" The heat of his youth inclined him to anger, and the 



MRS. HUTCHINSON. 49 

goodness of his nature made him prone to love and grief; 
but his soul ever reigned king upon the internal throne, 
and was never taken captive by his senses : religion and 
reason, its two favoured counsellors, took order that all 
the passions kept within just bounds, there did him good, 
and furthered the public weal." 

The debts Colonel Hutchinson had incurred in the 
public service, left his excellent widow in very straitened 
circumstances. The estate at Owthorpe was sold to a 
younger branch of her husband's family, who happened 
to be in favour with the triumphant royalists. Mrs. 
Hutchinson lived to see some of her children married, 
and survived two of them. The precise period of her 
death is not mentioned. One of their decendants emi- 
grated to America. I do not know whether any of his 
posterity now survive in this country. The family of 
Apsley merged in the noble family of Bathurst, who re- 
tain the name of Apsley as their second title. 

Mrs. Hutchinson was possessed of talent and learning 
that would have given her a high reputation in any age, 
and which were very extraordinary in a lady of that 
period ; yet she performed all the duties of a woman in a 
most exemplary manner. The Edinburgh Review pays 
the following tribute to her memory: "Education is 
certainly far more generally diffused in our days, and 
accomplishments infinitely more common ; but the perusal 
of this volume has taught us to doubt whether the better 
sort of women were not fashioned of old, by a purer and 
more exalted standard ; and whether the most eminent 
female of the present day would not appear to disadvan- 
tage by the side of Mrs. Hutchinson. There is something 
in the domestic virtue and calm commanding mind of this 
English matron, that makes the Corinnes and Heloises 



50 GOOD WIVES, 

appear very insignificant. We may safely venture to 
assert that a nation which produces many such wives and 
mothers as Mrs. Lucy Hutchinson, must be both great and 
happy." 



LADY BIRON, 

WIFE OF SIR JOHN BIRON. 

There is a singular story told concerning the grand 
parents of Colonel Hutchinson. His maternal grand- 
father was not the eldest son of Sir John Biron. There 
was an elder brother who had displeased his father so 
much by an obscure marriage, that he intended to divide 
his estate equally between his sons. The younger son 
married the daughter of Lord Fitzwilliam, who had en- 
joyed a princely office during the reign of Queen Eliza- 
beth. This lady was endowed with rare beauty and 
great accomplishments ; and her husband was exceedingly 
enamoured of her. But noble-minded and intelligent as 
she was, she had one great weakness — she could not 
endure that a woman very inferior to herself should be 
the wife of the elder son, while she was wedded to the 
younger. This source of discontent was removed by a 
sad accident. One day the brothers went out to hunt 
with their father ; and the elder, being of a merry disposi- 
tion, commanded something to be put under his servant's 
saddle, to frighten the horse, and make sport. The joke 
succeeded so well that the author of it died in a passion 
of laughter. 

The marriage which gave so much offence had proved 
childless ; and the younger brother of course inherited 
the estates and titles of the family, 



52 GOOD WIVES, 

The high-born beauty was now in the very zenith of 
her wishes, and blest with a lovely family. But it 
pleased Divine Providence suddenly to eclipse her glory. 
At the birth of twin daughters her brilliant intellect was 
obscured forever ! The best physicians in England tried 
in vain to restore her understanding. She was never 
frantic ; but had a pretty poetical delirium, often more 
delightful than the conversation of women, who had per- 
fect use of their senses. Her husband relinquished all 
business and all amusements, and devoted his whole time 
to her, and to the education of their children. After the 
loss of her reason, she had other children ; but they were 
not affected by their mother's unfortunate condition. 

Though Lady Biron's mind was distempered in all 
other respects, she retained perfect love and docility to 
her husband ; and he treated her with more tenderness 
and respect than he had done even during the first years 
of their happy union. Thus in the constancy of mutual 
affection they advanced toward old age. 

When she was ill, he slept in a separate bed in the 
same chamber, while two women took turns in watching 
her. 

It was his custom, the moment he unclosed his eyes, to 
ask how she did. One night, when he was in a very 
deep sleep, she departed from this life. He was to have 
gone a hunting that morning, the exercise being recom- 
mended for his health ; and it was his habit to have the 
chaplain pray with him bef6re he went out. The nurses, 
knowing how much he loved his wife, were afraid to tell 
him of her death; and they begged the chaplain to 
inform him of it, in the gentlest manner he could. Sir 
John did not that morning, according to his usual custom 
inquire how his lady did. He called the chaplain, joined 



LADY BIRON. 53 

with him in prayer, and expired in the midst of the holy 
service. The husband and wife were laid side by side, 
and buried in the same grave. It was never known 
whether he had discovered his loss, and his heart had 
broken at the separation from one he loved so dearly, or 
whether a strange sympathy of nature had produced this 
affecting coincidence. But so it happened, that God in 
his mercy took them at once from a world, whose bitterest 
portion is a widowed heart. 



MRS. FLETCHER, 

WIFE 0FREV. JOHN FLETCHER. 

The Rev. John Fletcher, Vicar of Madely, in Eng- 
land, is well known among the disciples of Wesley, as 
9. man of great zeal, piety and gentleness, whose efforts 
in the cause of religion were much blessed. 

The lady he married was named Mary Bosanquet. 
Her parents were highly respectable and wealthy, and 
she of course was surrounded by the pleasures and fasci- 
nations of the world. But in early childhood she was 
much under the influence of a domestic, who had been 
converted by Methodist preaching; and from her she re- 
ceived impressions which she never afterward lost ; im- 
pressions that gave a colouring to the whole of her future 
life. When seven years old, she says, " I thought if I 
became a Methodist, I should be sure of salvation ; and 
determined if I ever could get to that people, whatever it 
cost me, I would be one of them. But after a few con- 
versations, and hearing my sister read some little books 
which this servant had given to her, I found out, it was 
not the being joined to any people that would save me, 
but I must be converted, and have faith in Christ ; that I 
was to be saved by believing ; and that believing would 
make me holy, and give me a power to love and serve 
God. The servant left our family, and my sister and I 
continued like blind persons groping our way in the dark; 
though we had so far discerned the truth as to express it 



MRS. FLETCHER. 55 

in the above manner, I could not comprehend it. My 
heart rose against the idea at being saved by a faith, which 
I could not understand. One day looking over the pic- 
tures in the Book of Martyrs, I thought it would be easier 
to be burned than to believe ; and heartily did I wish that 
the Papists would come and burn me, and then I thought 
I should be quite safe." 

The death of her grandfather and grandmother, when 
she was about thirteen years of age, tended to increase 
the seriousness of her youthful character. She sajrs, 
" My honoured grandfather was one of the excellent of 
the earth. In his last illness he delighted much in these 
words, ' My sheep hear my voice ; I know them, and 
they follow me.' He was aged seventy-nine, and had 
lived with my grandmother forty-five years, in a union 
not usually to be met with. He was plain in his dress, 
and strictly conscientious in all his expenses. When 
many dishes were on his table, he scarcely ate of anything 
but mutton, and that for many years, because he believ- 
ed it most conducive to his health. His love and charity 
to the poor were uncommon. He esteemed it a reproach 
to any man to say he died very rich ; adding, ' It is too 
plain a mark he has not made a good use of his income.' 
One day a gentleman, who was by him upon the Ex- 
change, said to another, ' Sir John, I give you joy ; they 
tell me you have completed your hundred thousand 
pounds.' The other replied, i I hope to double it before 
I die.' My grandfather, turning round quickly, said, 
' Then, Sir John, you are not worthy of it.' 

"My grandmother was a woman of an uncommonly 
sweet temper; and having acquired a good deal of skill 
in physic, she so helped the poor, that they looked on her 
as a mother, a nurse, and a counsellor. When my grand- 



56 GOOD WIVES, 

father had been dead three months, she dreamed that he 
came to her one night, and standing by the bed-side told 
her that ' she should come to him shortly ; till then his 
happiness was not so complete as it would be ;' and added 
' Study the Scriptures — study the Scriptures ; in them, 
ye think ye have eternal life.' She always had a vene- 
ration for the Word of God ; but from that time she ap- 
plied to it daily, in a manner superior to what she had 
done before. About three weeks after, she said to us, 
' Air that room ; I will go into it, that I may die in the 
bed where my husband died.' She came out no more ; 
for she expired within the week." 

The parents of Mary Bosanquet, having removed all 
Methodist books, and dismissed the above-mentioned do- 
mestic, thought her religious impressions had worn off. 
But when the mind is earnestly intent upon any one 
object, it will find means, even under the most adverse 
circumstances, to gratify its ruling inclination. She and 
her elder sister, unknown to their parents, contrived to 
keep up an intimacy with several of Mr. Wesley's fol- 
lowers ; and when her sister married, and removed from 
her, these connexions still continued. 

The consequences were inevitable. What are called 
the pleasures of society were at variance with her ideas 
of religious duty, and she was unable to discover how 
she could at the same time serve God and the world. 
She begged leave not to accompany the family to the 
theatre, because she could not conscientiously partake of 
such amusements ; and when her father told her that 
" her arguments proved too much ; since, according to 
her doctrines, all places of diversion, all dress, all parties 
— indeed the whole spirit of the world, was sinful," she 
replied, " I believe it to be so ; and am therefore deter- 



MRS. FLETCHER. 57 

mined to be no more conformed to its customs, fashions, 
or maxims." 

This, of course, opened the door for many domestic 
trials. Her father reasoned, her mother grieved, and her 
acquaintance sneered. Sometimes she yielded to the 
temptations around her, and was enticed by the world ; 
but these states of mind were usually followed by de- 
pression, arising from a sense of her own weakness, 
This brought on fresh reproaches ; her melancholy was 
said to be occasioned by her strange ideas of religion ; 
and if she were visited by illness, it was attributed to 
the same cause. 

She loved her father very tenderly, and therefore it 
was peculiarly painful to her to oppose him. Obedience 
to God seemed to her to be at variance . with obedience to 
her parents ; and she was continually perplexed to know 
how far she ought to conform to them, and how far she 
ought to resist. 

When she was about seventeen years of age, she be- 
came acquainted with a gentleman, who professed great 
affection for her. Her religious friends advised her to 
think of him, as he was likely to be very acceptable to her 
parents, and would enable her to enjoy more liberty than 
she could have under her parental roof. She was per- 
plexed by these counsels, and sometimes tempted; but 
she soon became convinced that her affections were not 
sufficiently interested ; and all thoughts of him were 
swallowed up in a renewed ardour of piety. Her mother 
sometimes expressed the opinion that Mary had better be 
removed from the family, lest her example should influ- 
ence her younger brothers, and thus, as she supposed, 
ruin their worldly prospects. Even her father, who was 
more calm and considerate, wished to exact from her a 



58 GOOD WIVES. 

promise that she would never in any way, attempt to 
make her brothers what she considered a Christian ; she 
replied, " I dare not promise that." Her father then inti- 
mated it was best for her to remove from home ; saying, 
with some emotion, " I do not know that you ever dis- 
obliged me wilfully in your life, but only in these fan- 
cies." Her mother approved of her resolution to take 
lodgings, and assisted her in the necessary arrangements. 
She says, " Something, however, seemed to hold us on 
both sides, from bringing it to the point. For the next 
two months I suffered much; my mind was exercised 
with many tender and painful feelings. One day my 
mother sent me word I must go home to my lodgings 
that night. I went down to dinner, but they said nothing 
on the subject ; and I could not begin it. The next day, 
as I was sitting in my room, I received again the same 
message ; during dinner, however, nothing was spoken 
on the subject. I was much distressed, I thought if they 
do not invite me to come and see them again, how shall 
I bear it ? At last, just as they were going out, my mo- 
ther said, " If you will, the coach, when it has set us 
down, may carry you to your lodging." My father 
added, " we should be glad to have you dine with us 
next Tuesday." This was some relief. I remained si- 
lent. When the coach returned, I ordered my trunk into 
it ; and struggling with myself, took a kind of leave of 
each of the servants, as they stood in tears. My lodging 
consisted of two rooms, as yet unfurnished. I had never 
seen the people of the house, I only knew them by char- 
acter to be sober persons. I borrowed a table and a can- 
dlestick, and the window-seat served me as a chair. Bolt- 
ing the door, I began to muse on my present situation. 
" I am young — only entered into my twenty-second year. 



MRS. FLETCHER. 59 

I am cast out of my father's house. My heart knows 
what it is to be a stranger. I prayed to the Lord, and 
found a sweet calm spread over my spirit. I could in a 
measure act faith on these words ; ' when thy father and 
thy mother forsake thee, the Lord shall take thee up.' 

" The following reflections also arose in my mind, ' I 
am now exposed to the world, and know not the snares 
that may be gathering around me. I will form a plan 
for my future conduct, and endeavour to walk thereby. I 
will not receive visits from single men ; and in order to 
evade the trial more easily, I will not get acquainted with 
any. I will endeavour to lay out my time by rule, that I 
may know each hour what is to be done; nevertheless I 
will cheerfully submit to have these rules broken, when- 
ever the providence of God thinks fit to do so. Thirdly, 
I will try to fix my mind on the example of Jesus Christ, 
remembering he came not to be ministered unto but to 
minister." 

" The prejudices of education are strong; especially in 
those brought up in rather high life. The being removed 
from a parent's habitation seemed very awful. I consid- 
ered myself liable to deep reproach, and trembled at the 
thought. But I remembered, ' he that loveth father or 
mother more than me, is not worthy of me.' 

" I had hired a sober girl to be in readiness to attend 
upon me; and my maid being now come, and having 
lighted a fire in the other room, and borrowed a kw ar- 
ticles of the family, she begged me to come into it, as the 
night was very cold. And now my captivity seemed 
turning every moment. The thought that I was brought 
out of the world, and had nothing to do but to be holy, 
filled me with consolation. Thankfulness overflowed my 
heart; and such a spirit of peace and content poured into 
my soul, that all about me seemed a little heaven. 



60 GOOD WIVES, 

" Some bread, with rank salt butter, and water to 
drink, made me so comfortable a meal, that I could truly 
say, ' I ate my meat with gladness, and singleness of 
heart.' As the bed was not put up, I laid almost on the 
ground that night, and it being a bright moonlight night, 
the sweet solemnity thereof well agreed with the tranquillity 
of my spirit. I had daily more cause for praise. I was 
acquainted with many of the excellent of the earth, and 
my delight was in them. Yet I was not without my 
cross; for every time I went to see my dear parents, 
what I* felt, when I rose up to go away, cannot well be 
imagined. Not that I wished to abide there ; but there 
was something very affecting in bidding farewell to those 
under whose roof I had always lived ; though I saw the 
wise and gracious hand of God in all, and that he had 
by this means set me free to do his service. From my 
heart I thanked Him as the author, and them as the 
profitable instruments of doing me so great good. My 
mother was frequently giving me little things; and every 
renewed mark of kindness made the wound bleed 
afresh.' ' 

Whether it were a strict duty for Miss Bosanquet to 
take so important a step as to withdraw from her natural 
protectors rather than to conform to them, is not a ques- 
tion to be decided by any conscience but her own. It 
appears to me that the purification of the heart may go 
on, under all kinds of external annoyances and incon- 
veniences. 

But whether Miss Bosanquet was, or was not, mis- 
taken in her perception of what was right, her intentions 
appear to have been perfectly sincere and pure. 

As she inherited some fortune from her grand-parents, 
which was entirely at her own disposal, she was enabled 



MRS. FLETCHER. 61 

to live in respectability and comfort. Feeling the want 
of a discreet faithful friend, she invited a poor invalid 
woman, of the same religious persuasion as herself, to 
he,r lodging; and until the death of this friend, they 
shared " but one heart, one mind, and one purse." 

Not long after she left home, she resolved to return to 
her native village, and convert a house she owned there 
into a place of religious instruction for poor children. 
The Methodists were then a new sect, and there was a 
gre*trexcitement about them. Her father told her, with 
a smile, that he could not prevent the mob from pulling 
her house about her ears, if they chose. She and her 
friend were indeed frequently annoyed by the populace, 
during their meetings ; but no worse injury was done 
than breaking windows, throwing dirt, howling about the 
house, &c. The orphan school succeeded wonderfully; 
but as the number of scholars increased fast, it was ne- 
cessary to employ many individuals to take care of them. 
The whole expense came upon Miss Bosanquet, and she 
soon began to realize that it would far exceed her income ; 
but she believed that she had a peculiar call from the 
Lord, and that she had nothing to do but to trust Divine 
Providence. Generous and unexpected contributions did, 
from time to time, lighten the load her benevolence had 
imposed upon itself. Still she was often harassed to pay 
her bills ; the care of so large a number of rude neglect- 
ed children was a great trial to the patience ; and her 
friend was sinking so fast, that each day she expected to 
look upon her for the last time. 

In the midst of these trials, she was deprived of her 

parents. On his death-bed, her father talked to her with 

much tenderness, and expressed regret that he had not 

left her fortune so entirely at her own disposal as that of 

4* 



62 GOOD WIVES. 

the other children. He offered to have an alteration made 
in the will ; but as she supposed there were some reasons 
why it would disturb his dying moments, she would not 
consent to any change. 

She found the fortune her father had left unrestricted 
was larger than his regrets had led her to imagine ; but 
with a household of thirty to support, it is not strange 
that she was involved in fresh embarrassments, for which 
she was blamed by the worldly-wise, and laughed at by 
the thoughtless. Her invalid friend said to her, '^My 
dear, I hardly know how to rejoice in the prospect of 
death, because I see no way for you. I shall leave you 
in the hands of enemies, but God will take care of you." 
Miss Bosanquet answered, " Can you think of any way 
for me ? It is sometimes presented to my mind, that I 
should be called to marry Mr. Fletcher." Her friend re- 
plied, " I like hirn the best of any man, if ever you do 
take that step. Yet unless he should be of a very tender 
disposition toward you, you would not be happy ; but 
God will direct you." 

This avowal is the first intimation of an attachment to 
Mr. Fletcher. He himself had no suspicion of it until 
she accepted him many years after. 

The impression made during their first acquaintance 
was mutual. In a letter written by Mr. Fletcher to Mr. 
Charles Wesley, soon after his introduction to the lady, he 
says, "You ask me a very singular question, — I shall an- 
swer it with a smile, as I suppose you asked it. You 
mio-ht have remarked that for some days before I set off 
for Madely, I considered matrimony with a different eye 
to what I had done ; and the person who then presented 
herself to my imagination was Miss Bosanquet. Her 
image pursued me for some hours the last day, and that 



MRS. FLETCHER. 63 

so warmly, that I should, perhaps, have lost my peace, if 
a suspicion of the truth of Juvenal's proverb, ' Veniunt a 
dote sigittce? (' the arrows come from the portion? rather 
than from the lady,) had not made me blush, fight, and 
flee to Jesus, who delivered me at the same moment from 
her image and from all ideas of marriage." 

After the first allusion to Mr. Fletcher, he is frequent- 
ly mentioned in Miss Bosanquet's journal. She speaks 
of the spirituality of his writings and preaching, finds a 
great similarity between his religious states and her own, 
expresses anxiety concerning his health, the necessity of 
his departure from England on that account, &c. 

But his conscientious scruples lest her fortune was the 
temptation kept them separated for a very long time : dur- 
ing the interval of which they were both preparing for a 
pure and eternal union, by following in all humility what 
appeared to them to be the will of God. 

Her path was one of peculiar trials. Her lonely situ- 
ation, her pecuniary embarrassments, her unruly and ex- 
pensive family, ingratitude and reproach where she had 
reason to expect consolation and assistance, all conspired 
to depress her mind, and enfeeble her health. It maybe 
said that she brought these afflictions on herself by taking 
an unnecessary burden ; but I think the good cannot re- 
fuse a tribute of respect to intentions so pure, and efforts 
so benevolent. In the midst of her perplexities, a gentle- 
man, whose fortune exceeded her own, wished very 
much to marry her, and strongly urged the necessity of 
her having some friend to arrange her worldly business. 
She deeply felt the want of such a friend ; and to one of 
her simple habits his fortune was amply sufficient in case 
of a total loss of her own ; but her affections were with 
Mr. Fletcher ; and, unlike many ladies, it seemed to her 



64 GOOD WIVES. 

a sin, to make a solemn promise of love to a man she did 
not love, and of honour to a man she could not honour. 
If all were as conscientious as Mr. and Mrs. Fletcher, the 
world would again become an Eden, where mortals mio-ht 
walk with angels, and the voice of God be heard in the 
garden. 

Domestic love is the only rose we have left of paradise. 
Alas ! that worldly prudence should scornfully cast it 
away, keeping only the thorn, as a memento that the love- 
ly blossom can exist in a sinful world. 

The pair that so patiently trusted in providence were 
led into the paths of happiness and peace. After an ab- 
sence of fifteen years, Mr. Fletcher returned to England, 
and immediately wrote to Miss Bosanquet that during 
twenty-five years he had entertained a regard for her, 
which was still as sincere as ever ; and if it appeared odd 
that he should write on such a subject when he had just re- 
turned from abroad, and especially without first seeing 
her, he could only say that his mind was so strongly drawn 
to do it, that he believed it to be the order of Providence. 

This letter struck her as very remarkable ; for she 
had with the most scrupulous delicacy, refrained from all 
communication with him ; and fearing it was wrong to 
employ her thoughts so much about him, she had prayed 
to the Lord to give her some indication that he was the 
man on whom she ought to fix her affections : and the 
token she asked was, that he should write to her as soon 
as he returned, and before he had seen her. 

In whatever light this circumstance may be viewed, it 
proves the tenderness of her conscience, and the beautiful 
simplicity of her faith. 

The necessity of arranging her worldly business, be- 
fore she removed to the distant residence of her husband, 



MRS. FLETCHER. 65 

occasioned a few months' delay, during which time she 
received visits from Mr. Fletcher, and corresponded with 
perfect frankness concerning her temporal and eternal 
concerns. By the sale of real estate, and the kind assist- 
ance of her brothers, she was nearly extricated from debt, 
and had a moderate income left at her disposal, by means of 
which the remainder of her debts was gradually paid. 

But increase of years had not taught this amiable 
couple any respect for the maxims of human policy ; they 
had grown old in the world, but not in the world's ways : 
it was their mutual wish to appropriate a portion of her 
income to the support of those orphans and invalids, who 
had hitherto found a home with her. This benevolent 
arrangement being made, they solemnly covenanted, in 
the name of the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit, to 
become one forever. 

The marriage took place in November, 1781 ; Mr. 
Fletcher was fifty- two years old, and she was ten years 
younger. Throughout their married life, they were 
inspired with a unity of purpose, and a perfect sympa- 
thy of heart ; so that it seemed as if their souls had 
actually mingled into one. She was his partner by the 
fireside, his companion in regeneration, and his assistant 
in parochial duties ; she even shared in his paternal ex- 
hortations to his flock. 

The habit of public speaking among women was not 
generally approved among the Methodists ; and she 
herself was very diffident on the subject. She tells us 
that none but her heavenly father knew how much she 
suffered when preparing for such occasions. The prac- 
tice originated in conversations with her assembled fami- 
ly of orphans and invalids, to which a few neighbours 
were sometimes added. By degrees, the zeal of others, 



66 GOOD WIVES. 

and a desire to impart her religious enjoyment, led her 
to enlarge her sphere of action ; and when she wrote to 
ask Mr. Wesley whether he considered it an unnecessary 
departure from the proper vocation of her sex, his an- 
swer implied that he generally disapproved of the prac- 
tice, but he thought her justified in continuing it, because 
she was the means of doing great good. Mr. Fletcher 
was of the same opinion ; and there remained no obstacle 
to her own convictions of duty. 

Her greatest anxiety, at the time of her marriage, 
seems to have been that she should not rightly perform 
her duties in a new place, and among a people who were 
strangers to her. When she spoke of this to Mr. 
Fletcher, he replied, " Do not encumber yourself on my 
account. If we must be thought ignorant and awkward, 
let us be willing to submit to it ; I require nothing of thee, 
my dear Polly, but to be more and more devoted to God." 

The testimony of her journal proves that there was no 
hypocrisy in this assertion. About a year after their 
marriage, she writes : " A twelvemonth ago I saw no- 
thing before me, temporally, but ruin ; but now my cup 
of blessing runs over, above all I could hope or wish for. 
I have the kindest and tenderest of husbands ; so spirit- 
ual a man, and so spiritual a union, I never had any 
adequate idea of. Oh, how does my soul praise God for 
his gracious providence ! What a help-mate he is to me, 
and how much better do we love one another than we did 
a year ago !" 

Many months afterward, she writes : " My dear hus- 
band's health is not good. What the Lord will do with 
us I know not. When I think of his life or health, being 
in danger, I am not anxious, as I used to be, but can rest 
in the love and wisdom of my unchangeable friend. 



MRS. FLETCHER. 67 

For this I praise Him, because no words can express the 
treasure I possess in our union ; and in proportion as I 
get nearer to God, I find a daily increase of that union ; 
yet I am enabled so to give him up to the Lord, that it 
holds my soul in a quiet dependance and sweet adherence 
to the divine will." 

Again she writes, " And do we see the anniversary of 
our blessed union yet another year ? And are we yet 
more happy and more tender toward each other ? Yes. 
srlory be to God ! we are ; and what is better, I can truly 
say, our souls get nearer to God. We are more spiritual, 
and- live more for eternity. 

« The Lord has showed me that he would make his 
will known to me through that of my dear husband, that 
I was to accept his directions as from God, and obey him 
as the church does Christ. That as 1 must give myself 
to his guidance as a child ; and wherever we were called, 
or however employed in the work of God, I should al- 
ways find protection, while I renounced all choice, by 
doing the will of another rather than my own." 

Mrs. Fletcher's health was far from being strong, and 
she sunk under the fatigues, which her zeal imposed upon 
her. When they had been married a little more than 
three years, she was seized with a fever of a very alarm- 
ing kind. At this time, she writes, " I had now a fresh 
instance of the tender care and love of my blessed partner ; 
sickness was made pleasant by his kind attention." Hav- 
ing promised to preach at a place where they had always 
been accustomed to go together, he was constrained by 
her illness to go alone. He was deeply affected, and m 
his sermon talked much of the piety and excellence of his 
beloved wife ; his affectionate congregation sympathized 
in his feelings and joined in his prayers. When he re- 



68 



GOOD WIVES 



turned home, he said to her, " My dear, I could scarcely 
speak to the people. I felt, I knew not how, as if thy 
empty chair stood by me. Something seemed to say we 
should soon be parted ; and I thought, ' Must I meet 
these people, and see her empty chair always by me.' ' 

One day, he said to her, " My dear love, I know not 
how it is, but I have a strange impression death is very 
near us, as if it be some sudden stroke upon one of us ; 
and it draws out all my soul in prayer that we may be 
ready. Lord, prepare the soul thou wilt call; and oh, 
stand by the poor disconsolate one, who shall be left 
behind." 

While she was ill, he often, in imagination passed 
through the whole parting scene, and struggled for the 
fortitude of perfect resignation. Sometimes, he would 
say, " Oh, must I ever see the day when thou art carried 
out to be buried ? How will the little things thou wert 
accustomed to use, and all those which thy tender care 
has prepared for me, in every part of the house, how will 
the sight of them wound and distress me !" 

But she was the one called to taste the bitter cup of 
separation. Before she was entirely recovered, he was 
likewise attacked by fever. On Saturday he was so ill, 
that Mrs. Fletcher begged he would not attempt to preach ; 
but he answered that he believed it to be the will of the 
Lord ; and in such cases, she never ventured to dissuade 
him. 

This last service to his people was an affecting scene. 
While reading the prayers, he nearly fainted away. His 
wife made her way through the crowd, and begged him 
to come out of the desk ; some other friends did so like- 
wise ; but with a sweet smile, he begged them to desist, 
and not interrupt the order of God. The windows were 



MRS. FLETCHER. 69 

opened, and a friend having presented him with a bunch 
of fragrant flowers, he was somewhat revived. He 
preached with a degree of strength and earnestness that 
surprised his hearers. After the sermon, he went to the 
communion-table, with these words, " I am going to throw 
myself under the wings of the cherubim, before the mer- 
cy-seat." 

The congregation was very large, and the service lasted 
long. He could scarcely stand, and was often obliged to 
stop for want of power to speak. His people were all 
weeping around him. As soon as the service was over, 
he was carried to his bed, where he immediately fainted 
away. After having obtained a little refreshing sleep, he 
waked with a pleasant smile, saying, " You see, my dear, 
that I am no worse for doing the Lord's work. He never 
fails me when I trust in him." 

From that time he grew weaker. His sorrowing wife 
prayed to the Lord to spare her beloved husband a little 
longer, if it were his good pleasure: but she says, " My 
prayer seemed to have no wings. It was held down, 
and I could not help continually mingling therewith, 
* Lord, give me a perfect resignation.' This uncertainty 
in my own mind made me rather tremble, lest the Lord 
was about to take the bitter cup out of my dear husband's 
hand, and give it unto me." 

One day she said to him, " My dear love, if I have ever 
said or done any thing to grieve thee, how will the re- 
membrance wound my heart should st thou be taken from 
me." With inexpressible tenderness he intreated her 
not to admit such thoughts, declaring his great thankful- 
ness for the enjoyment he had derived from their perfect 
union. 

His conversation was full of humility and faith. When 



70 GOOD WIVES. 

he was nearly speechless, he made a sign with his finger, 
saying, " When I do this, you will know that I mean 
God is love, and we will draw each other to God. 
Observe ! We will draw each other to God." This sign 
he repeated often, as long as he had power to make the 
motion. His last prayer, as he affectionately pressed the 
hand of his beloved partner, was, " Husband of the church, 
be husband to my wife!" 

He died on Sunday night, after an illness of nine or ten 
days. His widow thus writes ; " Three years, nine 
months, and two days, I lived with my heavenly-minded 
husband ; but now the sun of my earthly joy is set forever, 
and my soul filled with anguish, which only finds con- 
solation in total resignation to the will of God. When I 
was asking the Lord if he pleased to spare him to me a 
little longer, the following answer was impressed on my 
mind with great power : ' Where I am, there shall my 
servants be, that they may behold my glory.' In the 
accomplishment of this word of promise I look for our re- 
union. It explained itself thus : that in Christ's immedi- 
ate presence was our home, and that in being deeply 
centered in him we should be re-united. I received it as 
a fresh marriage for eternity. Whenever I thought of 
this expression, ' to behold my glory,' it seemed to wipe 
away every tear, and was as the ring by which we were 
joined anew. As such I trust forever to hold it." 

" The day after he died, it occurred to my mind that 
before we were married some letters passed between us, 
which he had often told me I had better burn ; saying, 
1 Thou puttest it off! and if one of us should die, it will 
almost kill the other to do it then.' Yet, being loth to part 
with them, I had neglected to do it ; but now being seized 
with a kind of palsy, and loss of memory, I thought, per- 



MRS. FLETCHER. 71 

haps in another day I may not be able to do it, and then 
I shall be unfaithful to my dear husband's command. 
The third day, therefore, I carried them to the fire. But 
oh, what did I feel ! I could not even avoid seeing some 
of the tender expressions they contained, which were now 
as barbed arrows to my heart." 

" I, who have known him most perfectly, am con- 
strained to declare that I never knew any one walk so 
closely in the ways of God as he did. The Lord gave 
him a conscience tender as the apple of an eye. He lit- 
erally preferred the interest of every one to his own. He 
was rigidly just, but perfectly loose from all attachment 
to the world. He shared all he had with the poor ; who 
lay so close to his heart, that even when he could not 
speak without difficulty, he cried out, ' What will become 
of my poor!' He bore with all my faults and failings in a 
manner that continually reminded me of the injunction, 
' Love your wives, as Christ loved the church.' His con- 
stant endeavour was to make me happy ; his strongest 
desire my spiritual growth*. He was in every sense of 
the word, the man my highest reason chose to obey." 

This testimony is corroborated by all who have spoken 
of Mr. Fletcher, either as a minister, or as a man. When 
some French people were asked why they went to hear 
a man whose language they could not understand, they 
answered, " We went to look at him ; for heaven seemed 
to beam from his countenance." 

His disconsolate widow, speaking of her loss, says, 
" My anguish was extreme. All outward support seem- 
ed to be withdrawn; appetite and sleep quite failed; and 
even the air, I often thought, had lost its vivifying power. 
As I never before had any just conception of the bitter 
anguish with which the Lord saw good to visit me at this 



72 GOOD WIVES. 

season, so I can give no just description of it. ' Known 
unto God are all his ways ;' and I was assured, even in 
the midst of my trouble, that all he did was well, and 
that there was a needs be for this heavy trial. All my 
religion seemed shrunk into one point ; a constant cry, 
< Thy will be done.' " 

Her greatest consolation, and the one to which her 
mind constantly recurred, was in the idea that her beloved 
husband was still with her. She says, " Perhaps he is 
nearer to me than ever. Perhaps he sees me continually, 
and, under God, guards and keeps me. Perhaps he 
knows my very thoughts. These reflections, though 
under a perhaps, give me some help. Could they be con- 
curred by reason, and above all by Scripture, they would 
yield me much consolation. I will try if I can find this 
solid ground for them. It does not appear to me at all 
contrary to reason to believe that happy departed spirits 
see and know all they would wish, and are divinely per- 
mitted to know ; and that they are concerned for the 
dear fellow pilgrims, whom they have left behind. I 
cannot but believe they are. Though death is a boun- 
dary we cannot see through, they who have passed the 
gulf may see us. Some small insects can see but a little 
way ; an apple would appear to them a mountain ; but 
we can see a thousand of them crawling at once, on what 
we call a small spot of earth. When an infant is brought 
into the world, how many senses, till then locked up, are 
brought into action ! There was an apparent separation 
from the mother; but every day increases its ability of 
entering into her thoughts, and bearing a part in all her 
feelings. And may we not suppose that some powers, 
analogous to sight and hearing, are equally opened on 
the entrance of a spirit into a heavenly state; though, like 



■ It S . F L E T C II E R . 73 

die infant, perhaps small in the beginning*, compared with. 
the measure that is to follow? Are not these geasonable 
trengthened by various passages of Scripture? 

" When Elijah laid himself down to sleep under a ju- 
niper tree in the desert, an angel bade him arise and eat 
ill- food a watchful Providence bad provided for him. 
The prophet did not, like Daniel, fall down as one dead; 
n n\ like Zachariah and the shepherds, become sore afraid ; 
afte? a moderate repast lie slept again, and received a 
second visit from his bright messenger with the same steady 
calmness as before. From which I am led to suppose 
that Elijah was accustomed to such communications." 

" If there be joy in the realms above 'over one sinner 
that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine which 
went not astray,' how evident it is that th« state of both 
individuals must be known there. The spirit of my dear 
husband loved and cared for me, and longed above every 
other desire for my spiritual advancement. ■ If it were 
the body, why doth it not love me still? Because that 
which loved me, is gone from it. And what is that but 
the spirit, which actuated the body as clock-work does 
the hand that tells the hour ? As spiritual union arises 
from a communication of the love which flows from Jesus 
Christ, I cannot but believe that a fuller measure of that 
divine principle must increase, not diminish, the union 
between kindred souls ; and that their change will not 
consist in the loss, but in the improvement of all good 
affections. 

" We are now in the body, and have senses and faculties 
suited thereto ; and may not spirits have faculties suited 
to spirits, by which they can as easily discern your soul, 
as you could perceive their bodies, if they were in the same 
state of existence as yourself? If you had never heard 
5 



74 GOOD WIVES, 

of a looking glass, would you understand me if I said, 
' Though you stand at one end of that long gallery, and 
I at the other, with my back toward you, I can discern 
your every action and motion?' Yet such a knowledge 
the looking glass would convey to me, Now if all things 
on earth are patterns and shadows of those above, may 
not something analogous to the glass represent to the 
world of spirits as just a picture of the changes of pos- 
ture in the spirit as the glass does those of the body ? 
That the appearance of the soul still in the body may be 
seen in heaven, without the knowledge of the person con- 
cerned, is evident ; because Ananias knew not that Saul 
had ever seen or heard of him, until God said to him, 
1 Behold he prayeth ; and hath seen in a vision a man 
named Ananias coming in, and putting his hand on ,,im, 
that he may receive his sight.' 

" God, both in his nature and his works, is perfect 
unity. Division never comes from him. His original 
design for our first parents was not sorrow, consequently 
not separation. If we suppose their friendship was not to 
have been immortal, we must suppose pain to be in para- 
dise." 

At the first return of the anniversary of her husband's 
death, she writes in her journal, " I w T as led to reflect on 
my union with my dear husband, and saw how much of 
the heavenly state we had enjoyed together ; and it 
seemed as if I so longed to give up all for God, that I 
offered up to his divine will, even our eternal union, if 
it were so in reality, as many suppose, that spirits forget 
all they have known and loved here. Then the question 
arose, 4 What part of our union can heaven dissolve ? It 
will take away all that was painful, such as our fears for 
each other's safety, our separations, &c. But what of 



MRS. FLETCHER. 75 

the pleasant part can heaven dissolve V I answered, from 
the bottom of my heart, ' Nothing, Lord, nothing !' Clear 
us light it appeared to me that heaven could not dissolve 
anything which agreed with its own nature. What came 
down from God, would, when returned to its source, live 
forever, and be corroborated, but not lessened. 

I am quite at a loss for words to describe the feelings 
of that hour ; for it fixed in my soul an assurance of our 
eternal union." 

Some time after, she writes : " Last night I had a 
powerful sense, in my sleep, of the presence of my dear 
husband. I felt such a sweet communion with his spirit 
as gave me much peaceful feeling. I had for some days 
thought that I ought to resist, more than I did, that lively 
remembrance of various scenes in his last illness, and 
many other circumstances, which frequently occurred 
with much pain. This thought being present to my 
mind, I looked on him. He said, with a most sweet 
smile, ■ It is better to forget.' * What,' said I, ' My dear 
love, to forget one another V He replied with inexpress- 
ible sweetness, ' It is better to forget ; it will not be long ; 
we shall not be parted long; we shall soon meet again.' 
He then signified, though not in words, that all weights 
ought to be laid aside. His presence continued till I 
awoke." 

A long time after, it is written in her journal: " This 
day five years, my beloved was on his death bed. And 
how is it with me now ! I answer from my heart, * It is 
well.' I love him at this moment as well as I ever did 
in my life ; but I love the will of God still better. I 
adore thee, my Almighty Saviour, that thou hast done 
thine own will, and not mine ! and that my dearest love 
has been five years in glory. 0, that I might be per- 



76 GOOD WIVES. 

mitted to feel a little of what he now is. Lord, are we 
not one ? ' The head of the woman is the man, as the 
head of the man is Christ ;' and ' whom God hath joined 
together, none can put asunder.' We are yet one; and 
shall I not feel a communication from thyself passing 
through that channel ? Lord make me spiritually minded 
— ' meet to partake the inheritance of the saints in light.' 
" Last night I prayed I might not have so disturbed a 
night as I have found of late, but that the Lord would 
keep away those hurrying dreams, which often disturb 
the quiet repose of my spirit. And it was so ; I found a 
difference. About the middle of the night, I saw my 
dear husband before me. We ran into each other's arms. 
I wished to ask him several questions concerning holi- 
ness, and the degree to be expected here, &c. But I 
found something like a dark cloud on my memory, so 
that I said in myself, ' I cannot frame the question I 
would ask j I am not permitted.' At length I asked, ' My 
dear, do you not visit me sometimes V He answered, 
' Many times a day.' ' But,' said I, ' do not principalities 
and powers strive to hinder you from communing with 
me?' He said, ' There is something in that.' ' And 
does their opposition cause you to sufTer in coming to 
me ?' He replied, ' There is not much in that.' ' Do you 
know every material thing that occurs to me ?' 'Yes.' 
4 And may T always know that thou art near me, when I 
am in trouble, or pain, or danger?' He paused, and said 
faintly, ' Why, yes ;' then added, ' but it is well for thee 
not to know it, for thy reliance must not be upon me.' 
He mentioned also some in glory who remembered me — 
and said, ' Mr. Hey is with us also ; he bade me tell thee 
so ;. and by that "' ou mayest know it is I who speak to 
thee.' Mr. Hey died a short time before, very happy in 
the Lord." 



MRS. FLETCHER. 77 

Old age came upon Mrs. Fetchei with a complication 
of bodily diseases, among which were dropsy and can* 
cry. Speaking of this, she says: k * I discern the near 
approach of dissolution, and am daily made sensible of 
decay. But these symptoms give me no dreary prospect. 
Tin will of God is my choice, in whatsoever way it 
■ itself. 1 feel a bleeding wound from the loss 
of thru d( and beet of men. But I am Conscious he 

is not dead! "He that believeth in Jesus shall never 
The will of God is so dear to me. 1 rejoice thai it 
is done ; though against my tenderest feelings. 

'* I have communion with my dearest love before the 

ne. He waits for me — he beckons me away. I 
want to be a meet partaker with my dear, dear, holy hus- 

I, now in light. I want to feel a fuller degree of the 
spirit in which he lives. O, Lord, thou knowest our 
union was far more in the spirit than in the flesh; thou 
hast said, ■ What God hath joined together, let no man 
put asunder.' Are we not still one?" 

ain she writes: "This has been a solemn day. 
Eight years ago I was, at this hour, waiting by his bed- 
side, with my eyes fixed on his dear, calm, peaceful, dy- 
ing countenance. I have this day gone through the scene ; 
but glory be to God, in a different manner than w T hen w r e 
seemed on the point of separation. This day it has been 
constantly on my mind as if we thought and did all toge- 
ther. Yes, thou dear spirit, well didst thou say to me in 
a dream, ' I am not dead — I live.' Yes, thou dost live ; 
and I have no doubt hast helped me this day to feel an 
uncommon peace, such as I sometimes have felt when 
dreaming, having in a peculiar manner a sense of the 
presence of heavenly spirits. There are seasons when 
the mind, joining itself to the Lord, feels a kind of auti- 
sm 



78 GOOD WIVES, 

cipation of the blissful union enjoyed in the realms of 
light, and has communion, more or less sensible, with the 
spirits before the throne. Some faint touches of this I 
have felt this day." 

A long time after, on the anniversary of her wedding, 
she thus continues her journal : " How different was my 
state this day fourteen years, when I first became a wife ! 
How tossed was my mind with a thousand fears, not yet 
fully knowing ' the angel of the church,' to whom I was 
joined ; and also encumbered with various temporal diffi- 
culties. But now there is not one clog left. My dear 
love's blessing does rest upon me. The husband of the 
church is indeed my husband ; and mercy with overflow- 
ing goodness follow me all the day long. When Sally^ 
or myself, visited the poor, and beheld great straits, we 
have sometimes been constrained to withhold help, be- 
cause my calculation would not allow it, though I had cut 
off what expense I could, according to my best light. 
This I laid before the Lord, and felt thoroughly content 
either to help or not. In a few days I received a letter 
from my brother with a proposal so to dispose of a part 
of my money, as was likely to raise me several additional 
pounds this year. A person also called and promised the 
payment of five guineas, which I had quite given up for 
lost. In a variety of little incidents, I have discerned 
such a guiding hand of Providence, as hourly confirms 
the truth of that word, ' The hairs of your head are all 
numbered.' " 

The infirmities of age and disease crowded fast upon 
this venerable Christian. Her zeal and benevolence con- 
tinued unabated, but the suffering body could no longer 
obey the dictates of the purified spirit. She complains 

* A faithful and valued domestic. 



MRS. FLETCHER. 79 

she could " not see to write half what she felt in her 
heart." Through hei whole life, her kindness to the 
afflicted and the destitute knew no bounds; she wanted 
to r lirvr all the misery there was in creation. Her book 
Kpensea gave a Btriking proof how little she required 
for herself, and how entirely she lived for others. The 
yearly sum she i xpended upon her own person never 
amounted to jfce pounds; while her annual expenditure 
for the peoi was aevei less than one hundred and eighty 
pounds. She was accustomed to say, " It is not impor- 
tant what we have, but how we use it." 

The same simplicity of heart, and consequent clearness 
of faith, continued to the last. She says, " I have given 
my hand to God, as a child to its mother, and he leads 
me hour by hour." 

The last mention she makes of her husband is as 
follows : " I feel death very near. My body is full of 
infirmities ; yet I am able to creep through each day, and 
io work a little in my Lord's vineyard. This day, Sep- 
tember twelfth, I am seventy-six years old, and the same 
day my dear husband w T ould have been eighty-six. It is 
nearly thirty-four years since our blessed union. It seems 
but yesterday ; and he is as near and dear as ever. 
Surely we shall remember the scenes we have had toge- 
ther. Oh, my God and Father, enable me to walk in 
thy presence ! Give me power to cleave to thee every 
moment ! I feel the powers of darkness are vehemently 
striving to distract and hinder me. My soul doth wait, 
and long to fly to the bosom of my God." 

Three months after she wrote this, she " slept in Jesus." 
She died, in peace and joy, on the ninth of December, 
1815, and her spirit joined her husband in that world, 
where all that is pure in human affection, becomes the 
immortal love of angels, and shares the eternity of God. 



LADY FANSHAWE, 

WIFE OF SIR RICHARD FANSHAWE. 

Ann Harrtson was the eldest daughter of Sir John 
Harrison of Balls, in England; her mother, Margaret 
Fanshawe, was of an ancient and highly respectable fa- 
mily, the members of which had at various times filled 
important official situations. The young lady was born 
in London, March 25, 1625. Mr. Hyde, afterward Lord 
Clarendon, was her godfather. She herself relates a re- 
markable story connected with her infancy. When she 
was about three months old, her mother became alarm- 
ingly ill with a fever, of which she apparently died. She 
had been in her shroud two days and a night, when Dr. 
Winston came on a visit of consolation to his friend Sir 
John Harrison. Looking earnestly at the corpse, the 
physician said, " She appears so beautiful, that I cannot 
believe she is dead ;" and suddenly applying a lancet to 
her foot, the blood began to flow. The application of 
powerful restoratives renewed the suspended functions of 
animal life. When she opened her eyes, her relatives, 
Lady Knollys and Lady Russell, were bending over her. 
According to the fashion of the times, they wore large, 
wide sleeves, which might easily be mistaken for wings. 
Lady Harrison's first exclamation was, " Did you not 
promise me fifteen years ? and have you come again ?" 
Her friends attributed these words to the delirium of ex- 
ceeding weakness, and begged her to keep very quiet. 



LAPV FANSHAWE. 81 

When seyeral hours bad elapsed, and her faculties were 
perfectly restored, Bhe desired to be left alone with her 
husband, and Dr. Hewlsworth, their clergyman. When 
her request had been complied with, she said, "During 
my trance I waa in great quiet, but in a place I could 
neither distinguish nor describe. The idea of leaving 
my little girl remained a trouble upon my spirits. Sud- 
denly I saw two by me, clothed in long white garments, 

and methought I fell down with mv face in the dust. 
They asked mo why 1 was .-ad in the midst of so great 
happiness. I replied, 'O, let me have the same grant 
given to Hczckiah, that I may live fifteen years, to see 
my daughter a woman.' They answered, ' It is done :' 
and at that instant, I awoke out of my trance." 

This excellent woman recovered her health entirely, 
and lived, a- -he had ever done, in the constant exercise 
of piety and benevolence. She died on the 20th day of 
July, 1640, exactly fifteen years from the period of her 
trance. Dr. Ho wis worth preached her funeral sermon, 
in which he told, before hundreds of people, the remark- 
able story we have just related. 

Ann Harrison was educated like most gentlewomen of 
that period ; being well instructed in French, music, 
dancing, and every variety of ornamental needle-work. 
Blessed with vigorous health, and overflowing with ani- 
mal spirits, she was gay even to wildness ; but though 
she delighted in riding, running, and all manner of ac- 
tive exercises, her manners were far removed from any- 
thing like boldness, or immodesty. 

The death of her good mother checked the somewhat 
excessive vivacity of her character, and placed a salutary 
restraint upon the thoughtless freedom of her youth. At 
fifteen years of age she took charge of her father's house 



82 GOODWIVES. 

and family, and fulfilled her duties in a manner highly- 
exemplary. 

At this period all England was troubled with the dis- 
putes between the King and Parliament, which afterward 
terminated so fatally for the injudicious monarch. Sir 
John Harrison was a devoted royalist, and of course be- 
came deeply involved in the difficulties and dangers of 
those perilous times. His son, William Harrison, being 
a member of the House of Commons, in 1641, pledoecL 
his father to lend one hundred and fifty thousand pounds, 
to pay the Scots, who had then entered England ; and 
this immense debt remained unpaid until the restoration 
of Charles the Second. In 1642, Sir John Harrison was 
taken prisoner at his residence, called Montague House, 
in Bishopgate street, London. His dwelling was plun- 
dered of everything valuable, and he was threatened with 
being sent on board ship with many others of the nobility. 
Upon the pretence of obtaining certain writings relating 
to the public revenue, he made his escape. In 1643, he 
went to Oxford, and was a member of the Long Parlia- 
ment, by means of which he lost the remainder of his 
fortune, and all his estates were sequestered. His two 
daughters resided with him at Oxford, in miserably un- 
comfortable lodgings. These young ladies, who had from 
infancy been accustomed to all the elegance and luxury of 
wealth, were suddenly reduced to such poverty that they 
had scarcely a change of clothing, and were obliged to 
sleep on a hard bed in a wretched garret. Surrounded 
by companions in distress, by sickness in various forms, 
and hearing of nothing but the horrid chances of civil 
war, their situation must have been desolate indeed ; yet 
the unfortunate loyalists are said to have borne all their 
privations and sufferings with a cheerful fortitude worthy 
of a better cause and a happier fate. 



LADY FANSHAWE. 83 

At this period Charles the First, who had nothing but 
empty honors to bestow, offered a baronetcy to Sir John 
Harrison ; it was gratefully refused upon the plea that he 
was too poor to support the dignities he already possessed. 
William Harrison, who had joined the king when he set 
up his standard at Nottingham, died in 1644, in conse- 
quence of a fall from his horse, which was shot under him 
in a skirmish with a party of the Earl of Essex. Not 
bog after her brother's death, Aim Harrison was married 
to Mr. Richard Fanshawe, one of the relatives of her 
mother's family. The bride was a little more than nine- 
teen, the bridegroom about thirty-six. The wedding was 
very private ; none being present but her nearest relations, 
her godfather, Sir Edward Hyde, and Sir Geoffry Palmer, 
the King's attorney. Mrs. Fanshawe was married with 
her mother's wedding ring, according to the express de- 
sire of her deceased parent. 

Richard Fanshawe had been educated a lawyer, in 
compliance with the wishes of his mother ; but the study 
was ever disagreeable to him, and when her death left 
him roaster of his own actions, he indulged his strong 
inclination to travel in foreign countries. He went to 
Paris with no greater supply of cash than five pounds ; 
but it proved lucky for him that some of his wealthy 
relations were residing in that city. The very night he 
arrived, two friars came to his lodgings, welcomed him 
as their countryman, and invited him to play. The inex- 
perienced young man, suspecting no mischief, agreed to 
amuse himself in this way until supper was ready. The 
cunning friars did not leave him a single penny ; but 
when they found he had no means of paying for his supper 
and lodgings, they loaned him five pieces of his money, 
till he could apply to some of his friends for assistance. 



84 



GOOD W IVE S. 



This lesson was never forgotten ; during the remainder 
of his life, nothing could tempt him to play for money. 
Seven years after this incident, Mr. Fanshawe being in 
company with several gentlemen in Huntingdonshire, 
was introduced to Captain Taller, in whom, notwithstand- 
ing his wig, scarlet cloak, and buff suit, he immediately 
recognised one of the Jesuits that cheated him. He 
offered the pretended captain the five pieces of money, 
saying, "Friar Sherwood, I know you, and you know 
the meaning of this." The astonished knave begged him 
to keep the secret, for his life was in danger. 

After a year's stay in Paris, Mr. Fanshawe went to 
Madrid. When he had been several years abroad, he 
was made secretary to Lord Aston, then ambassador to 
Spain. When the minister returned to England, he was 
left resident until a new ambassador was appointed ; and 
very soon after he set off for his native country. On this 
journey, a Spanish inn, where he lodged, took fire in the 
night. He was very weary, and slept so soundly that all 
the noise and confusion around him did not awaken him. 
The honest landlord carried him out and placed him on 
a timber by the wayside, with his portmanteau and clothes 
beside him. When he awoke, he missed nothing but the 
house, which was burnt to the ground. 

He arrived in England in 1638. His patrimony, which 
was not large, had been nearly expended in his travels ; 
and as one of the queen's Catholic favourites was his de- 
termined enemy, he did not easily obtain any office. At 
length, he was appointed Secretary of War to the Prince, 
and received a promise from Charles the First that he 
should be preferred to some more lucrative situation, as 
soon as opportunity offered. 

At the time of Mr. Fanshawe's marriage with his fair 



LADY FANSHAWE. 85 

relative, both his fortune and hers were in expectation. 
Their union indicated a degree of trust in Divine Provi- 
dence, which is but too rare among the young and ambi- 
tious. She says, " We might truly be called merchant 
adventurers, lor the stock we set up our trading with did 
not amount to twent) pounds betwixt us; but it was to 
us as a little piece of armour is against a bullet, which if 
ii b right placed, though no bigger than a shilling, 
serves as well as a whole suit of armour. Our stock 
bou :h\ pen, ink and paper, which was your father's trade, 
and by it I assure you we lived better than those who 
were born to two thousand pounds a year, as long as he 
had his liberty." . 

In March, 1645, the duties of his office called Mr. 
Fanshawe to Bristol. Their eldest son being but a few 
days old, Mrs. Fanshawe was unable to accompany him. 
This was their first separation, and it took place under 
circumstances that added to its bitterness. They were 
in poverty, in a garrison town, she was extremely weak, 
and her babe was dying. Her husband, though naturally 
a firm man, was affected even to tears. 

Mrs. Fanshawe w T as not, however, without consolation. 
It is not in the power of fate to make a true-hearted 
woman miserable, while she is blessed with the love and 
confidence of a kind husband. 

The babe died, and the mother continued very ill for 
several weeks ; but the attentions of her father and sister, 
aided by frequent and affectionate letters from her hus- 
band, at last restored the sufferer to comparative health. 

In May, she received fifty pieces of gold from Mr. 
Fanshawe, with a letter stating that men and horses 
would be sent to enable her to come to him. Her joy 
and gratitude on this occasion knew no bounds. She 



86 GOOD WIVES. 

says the gold she received when she was ready to perish 
did not revive her half so much as the summons to meet 
her dearly beloved partner. She went into the garden to 
inform her father of the glad tidings she had received. 
While they were expressing their mutual pleasure, drums 
were heard in the highway, under the garden wall. It 
was a company of foot, commanded by one of their friends, 
and her father asked if she would like to see them pass. 
She assented to the proposition, and not being very strong, 
leaned against a tree for support. The officer, seeing 
Sir John Harrison and his daughter, ordered a volley of 
shot to be fired as a compliment. One of the muskets 
chanced to be loaded, and a brace of bullets lodged in the 
tree, not two inches above Mrs. Fanshawe's head. 

The next week she and her relative started for Bristol, 
full of hope and cheerfulness. The whole country was 
in arms, and the party would in all probability have been 
taken prisoners, had not a troop of horse escorted them 
through the most dangerous part of their route. They 
arrived at Bristol in safety, and were received by Mr. 
Fanshawe with open arms. He gave his wife a hundred 
pieces of gold, saying, " I know that she, who keeps my 
heart so well, will keep my fortune. From this time, I 
will ever put it into thy hands, as God shall bless me 
with increase." 

She speaks of her feelings toward him with such 
charming tenderness, and beautiful simplicity of lan- 
guage, that I cannot forbear quoting her own words : 
" And now I thought myself a perfect queen, and ray 
husband so glorious a crown, that I more valued myself 
to be called by his name than born a princess, for I knew 
him very wise and very good, and his soul doated on me ; 
upon which confidence, I will tell you what happened. 



LADYFANSHAWE. 87 

My Lady Rivers, a brave woman, and one that had 
suffered many thousand pounds' loss for the king, for 
whom I had a groat reverence, ahd she a kinswoman's 
kindness for me, in discourse tacitly commended the 
knowledge of state a (lairs ; she mentioned several women, 
who were very happy in a good understanding thereof, 
and said none of them was originally more capable than I. 
She said a post would arrive from Paris from the Queen 
thai night, and she should extremely like to know what 
news it brought ; adding if I would ask my husband pri- 
vately, he would tell me what he found in the packet, 
and I might tell her. I, that was young and innocent, 
and to that day had never in my mouth, ' What news V 
now began to think there was more in inquiring into 
public affairs than I had thought of; and that being a 
fashionable thing it would make me more beloved of my 
husband than I already was, if that had been possible. 
When my husband returned home from the council, after 
receiving my welcome, he went with his hands full of 
papers into his study. I followed him ; he turned hastily, 
and said, ' What wouldst thou have, my life V I told 
him I heard the Prince had received a packet from the 
Queen, and I guessed he had it in his hand, and I desir- 
ed to know what was in it. He smilingly replied, ' My 
love, 1 will immediately come to thee ; pray thee go ; for 
I am very busy.' When he came out of his closet, I 
revived my suit ; he kissed me, and talked of other things. 
At supper I would eat nothing ; he as usual sat by me, 
and drank often to me, which was his custom, and was 
full of discourse to company that was at table. Going to 
bed I asked him again, and said I could not believe he 
loved me, if he refused to tell me all he knew. He an- 
swered nothing, but stopped my mouth with kisses. I 



88 GOODWIVES. 

cried, and he went to sleep. Next morning very early, 
as his custom was, he called to rise, but began to dis- 
course with me first, to which I made no reply ; he rose, 
came on the other side of the bed, kissed me, drew the 
curtains softly, and went to Court. When he came home 
to dinner, he presently came to me as was usual, and 
when I had him by the hand, I said, ' Thou dost not care 
to see me troubled ;' to which he, taking me in his arms, 
answered, c My dearest soul, nothing on earth can afflict 
me like that ; when you asked me of my business, it was 
wholly out of my power to satisfy thee. My life, my 
fortune, shall be thine, and every thought of my heart, in 
which the trust I am in may not be revealed ; but my 
honour is my own, which I cannot preserve, if I commu- 
nicate the Prince's affairs. I pray thee with this answer 
rest satisfied.' 

" So great was his reason and goodness, that upon con- 
sideration it made my folly appear to me so vile, that 
from that day until the day of his death, I never thought 
fit to ask him any business, except what he communicated 
freely to me in or^er to his estate or family." 

In the summer of 1645, the plague appeared in Bristol, 
and increased so rapidly that the Prince and his suite 
were obliged to change their residence. They removed 
to Barnstable, one of the finest towns in England, then 
commanded by Sir Allen Apsley, whom we have men- 
tioned as the father of Mrs. Colonel Hutchinson. Here 
they had the best of provisions, and excellent accommoda- 
tions in all respects. Mrs. Fanshawe mentions as a curi- 
osity, a parrot more than a hundred years old, which be- 
longed to the house where they lodged. 

The Prince's affairs did not allow him to remain long 
at Barnstable ; he removed to Launcetown, in Cornwall, 



LADY FANSHAWE. 89 

followed by his personal attendants. During all the time 
Mrs. Fanshawe was in the Court, she never saw the 
prince, except a1 church ; it was considered improper for 
a virtuous woman to visit a court where no la. lies pre- 
sided, and during their journeys Mr. Fansliawe always 
either Followed or preceded his royal master. 

Sirs. Fanshawe took lodgings at Truro, about twenty 
miles from Lau nee town, where her husband kept a small 
trunk of jewels belonging to the prince. This circum- 
stance being discovered, the house was attacked by rob- 
bers, one night, when he was absent. Mrs. Fanshawe 
and her household defended themselves until some of the 
town's people came to their rescue ; and the next day an 
armed guard was sent for their protection. 

Early in the spring of 1646, the prince and his train 
embarked for the Scilly Isles. Mr. Fanshawe's house 
and furniture were left in the care of an officer, who 
ch<ated them of all their possessions, under the pretence 
that the goods had been plundered. To make matters 
worse, the sailors broke open their trunks and pillaged 
everything of value, not even leaving Mrs. Fanshawe her 
ribbons and gloves. In the midst of all these disasters, 
she was extremely sea-sick, and in a situation that un- 
fitted her for such hardships. When they were set on 
shore in the Island of Scilly, she was nearly dead. In 
this condition she was obliged to sleep in a little room in 
a garret, to which she ascended by means of a ladder. 
The adjoining apartment was stored with dried fish. 
Being overcome with fatigue, she soon fell asleep, but 
awoke toward morning shivering with the cold ; and 
when the day dawned, she discovered that her bed was 
swimming in salt water, occasioned by the overflowing 
of the spring-tides. They remained here several weeks, 
6 



90 GOOD WIVES, 

almost destitute of clothes, fuel, or provisions. She says, 
" Truly we begged our daily bread of God, for we thought 
every meal our last." 

But she seems to have endured all this with a strong- 
heart. Loving her husband as she did, she carried her 
own sunshine with her, and the world could not take it 
away. 

From the Isles of Scilly, the prince and his followers 
sailed for the Isle of Jersey, where they arrived in safety, 
and were hospitably received among the loyal inhabitants. 

Mr. Fanshawe's family took lodgings at the house of a 
widow, who sold stockings ; here their second child was 
born, and baptised by the name of Anne. 

The Queen Henrietta Maria, then residing in France, 
was exceedingly anxious that her son should join her ; 
the prince accordingly departed for Paris, and Mr. Fan- 
shawe's employment ceased. His brother, Lord Fan- 
shawe, being very ill at Caen, he went thither with his 
wife ; leaving their babe at Jersey, under the care of Lady 
Cateret, wife of the Governor. From Caen, Mrs. Fan- 
shawe, at her husband's request, went to London for the 
purpose of raising money from his estates ; and making 
some necessary arrangements for his safety. It was the 
first journey she had ever taken without him, and the first 
important business with which he had entrusted her. 
The blessing of God rested upon her energetic and affec- 
tionate efforts. By means of an influential member of the 
parliamentary party, who owed some obligations to her 
family, she procured a pass for her husband to return to 
England, and compounded for a portion of her fortune. 

They remained in England in great seclusion; for the 
prospects of the king's party daily grew worse. In July, 
1647, another son was added to their family. At this 



LADY FANS H AWE. 91 

time, the unfortunate Charles the First was at Hampton 
Court, where ftfr. Fanshawe waited upon him and re- 

ceived orders to proceed to Madrid, with letters and pri- 
instructioas. Mrs. Fanshawe had several interviews 
with the unhappy and misguided monarch ; and educated 
be had been in principles of enthusiastic loyalty, no 
wonder her heart paid a fervent tribute to his virtues, and 
his sufferings. She say-. " When I took leavo of him, I 
could not retrain from weeping. I prayed God to preserve 
his majesty with long life and happy years. He passed 
his hand over my cheek, and said, 'Child, if it pleases 
God, it shall be so ; but we must both submit to His will; 
and you know in what hands I am.' Turning to my 
husband, be said, 'Be sure, Dick, to tell my son all I have 
said, and deliver those letters to my wife. Pray God 
bless her ! I hope I shall do well.' Then folding him 
in his arms, he added, ' Thou hast ever been an honest 
man. I hope God will bless thee, and make thee a happy 
servant to my son, whom I have charged to continue his 
love and trust to you. I do promise you that if ever I 
am restored to my dignity I will bountifully reward you 
both for your services and sufferings.'" 

Alas, the royal prisoner never had it in his power to 
fulfil these promises. If his political sins were great, he 
made a fearful atonement for them. A very few months 
after this parting interview with his faithful adherents, 
he w r as beheaded at Whitehall. 

The famous Mrs. Hutchinson w r as at this eventful pe- 
riod suffering privations and perils nearly equal to those 
encountered by Mrs. Fanshawe. Colonel Hutchinson 
voted for the death of the king, while Mr. Fanshawe 
would have given his own life to save him. The wife 
of each was zealous in the politics of the heart, 



92 GOOD WIVES, 

in woman's loyalty to her husband. It would not have 
been well for the liberties of England if the cause, in 
which Mrs. Fanshawe's energies were displayed, had 
triumphed ; but her disinterestedness and courage none 
the less deserve our admiration and respect. 

In October, 1647, Mr. Fanshawe went to Portsmouth 
for the purpose of embarking for France. While there 
they narrowly escaped being killed by a shot fired into 
the town by the Dutch fleet, then at war with England. 
The bullets passed so near as to whiz in their ears. Mrs. 
Fanshawe called to her husband to run, but without al- 
tering his pace, he replied, " If we must be killed, it 
were as good to be killed walking as running." 

The following spring they returned to England, bring- 
ing with them their little daughter, whom they had left 
in the Isle of Jersey. Soon after their arrival, Mrs. 
Fanshawe again became a mother. She speaks of wel- 
coming the Marchioness of Ormond in London, and of 
receiving from her a ruby ring set with diamonds. A 
few short months before, she was sleeping in a garret 
among dried fish : a contrast by no means remarkable in 
the adventures of the higher classes at that period. 

The Prince of Wales was at that time on board the 
fleet in the Downs ; part of this fleet declared for the 
king, and part for the parliament. The prince resolved 
to reduce the latter to obedience by force of arms, and 
sent for Mr. Fanshawe to attend him. Being aware 
that the enterprise would be one of extreme peril, he 
wrote a farewell letter to his wife, entreating her to pre- 
pare herself for the worst, and to endure whatever trials 
might befal her, with patience and fortitude ; " and this 
with so much love and reason," says Mrs. Fanshawe, 
"that my heart melts to this day when I think of it." 



L A 1) V V A N S 11 A W E . 93 

Fortunately for the anxious wife, a storm separated the 
Bhips, and prevented at: engagement. 

Three months after, Mr. Fanshawe was sent to Paris, 
on business for the prince; and his family accompanied 
him. Here they associated intimately with the Queen 
Mother, with Waller the poet, and with many distin- 
guished men of their own and other nations. 

Such was the embarrassed state of the royalists at this 
period, that it again became necessary for Mrs. Fan- 
tthawe to go to England to raise money. She was ac- 
companied by her sister Margaret, her little daughter, 
and Mrs. Waller. A violent storm arose during the pas- 
sage, and the vessel was nearly wrecked. The women 
and children were saved by being carried through the 
water on the shoulders of the sailors. 

From France Mr. Fanshawe went into Flanders, and 
afterward to Ireland, to receive such moneys as Prince 
Rupert could raise for the king. 

In Ireland, he sent for his family to join him ; and Mrs. 
Fanshawe tells us that she set out right cheerfully towards 
her " north star." She carried her husband four thousand 
pounds, which she had raised from their estates in Eng- 
land. She says : " At that time I thought it a vast sum ; 
but be it more or less, I am sure it was spent in seven 
years' time, in the king's service, and to this hour I re- 
pent it not, I thank God." 

After a hazardous voyage, Mrs. Fanshawe joined her 
beloved companions. They took up their residence at 
Red Abbey, near Cork ; where they received much kind- 
ness and attention, and lived very happily for a time. 
But during this brief season of tranquillity, they heard 
of the death of their second son Henry ; and a few- 
weeks after they received these melancholy tidings, 



94 GOOD WIVES. 

Cromwell's army marched over Ireland, and effectually 
stopped the intended expedition of Prince Rupert. Mrs. 
Fanshawe's state of health at this time required indulg- 
ence and repose ; and * she suffered excruciating pain 
from a broken wrist, which had been unskilfully set. She 
was unable to leave her chamber, when news was 
brought that the city of Cork had revolted from the royal 
cause. Her husband was gone on business to Kinsale, 
when she was awakened at midnight by the discharge of 
guns and the shrieks of women and children. This en- 
ergetic woman, ill and suffering as she was, immediately 
aroused all her family, and wrote a cheering letter to her 
husband, assuring him that she should get away safely, 
blessing God's Providence that he was out of danger ; 
this letter was sent by a faithful servant, who was let 
down from the walls of Red Abbey in the night time. 
Having secured Mr. Fanshawe's papers, with about one 
thousand pounds in gold and silver, she went directly into 
the market-place, attended only by two servants, and 
asked to see Colonel Jeffries. She was obliged to pass 
through an armed and unruly multitude, and she was in 
a state of severe suffering ; but the exigencies of the mo- 
ment demanded exertion, and when was the strength of a 
loving heart found unequal to its allotted task ? Colonel 
Jefferies had reason to be grateful to Mrs. Fanshawe's 
father, for some former services; and he did not hesitate 
to give a safe passport for herself, her family, and her 
goods, out of that dangerous vicinity. Thus provided, 
the invalid returned to Red Abbey through thousands of 
naked swords, hired a cart, and set off at five o'clock in 
the morning, in November, with her sister, her little girl, 
three maids, and two men. They had but two horses 
among them, which they rode by turns. It was of course 



LADY F A N S H A W E . 95 

impossible to avoid leaving; considerable furniture exposed 
to the certain plunder of the soldiers. The party travel- 
led in perpetual fear of being ordered back again; but 

\ at last arrived at Kinsale in safety, and were thank- 
fully clasped to the heart of the anxious husband and 
lather. Cromwell was very much vexed when he heard 
that Mr. Fanshawe's papers had been carried away by 
his wife. ' It was of as much consequence to seize his pa- 
p ra as to obtain possession of the town !" exclaimed he. 

A few days after this escape, Mr. Fanshaw T e received 
orders to proceed to the court of Spain with letters to 
Philip the Fourth. The Earl of Roscommon, then Lord 
Chancellor, fell down stairs and shattered his skull, just 
as he had ended a private conference with him, and was 
about to light him to the door. By his death, the broad 
seal of Ireland was left in Mr. Fanshawe's hands, and it 
became necessary to delay his departure, till he received 
orders how to dispose of it. At this juncture they gladly 
availed themselves of the hospitable invitation of several 
of the Irish nobility. A few nights were passed with 
Lady O'Brien, daughter of the Earl of Thomond. Here 
Mrs. Fanshawe was frightened by a pale phantom of a 
woman at the window ; and when, after much difficulty 
she succeeded in waking her husband, the figure had 
vanished, but the window remained open. In the morn- 
ing their hostess informed them that they had slept in a 
haunted apartment, and that the phantom was an old 
hereditary spirit of the castle, whose body had been mur- 
dered by one of the O'Briens ; but as it only appeared 
w T hen some of the family died, she had not thought of the 
circumstance when she placed her guests in that room ; 
she added that her cousin had died a little past midnight 
in the chamber above. 



96 GOOD WIVES. 

Mr. Fanshawe 's mode of arguing on this occasion is a 
good illustration of the superstition of those times : he 
said such sights were very common in Ireland, because 
the inhabitants had too little of a wise faith, and were too 
ignorant to defend themselves against the power, which 
the Evil One exercised so freely among them. 

As soon as possible, Mr. Fanshavve transferred the 
great seal to other hands, and started for Gal way, in order 
to take shipping for Spain. The conquering Cromwell 
was close upon their footsteps, and they journeyed in 
anxiety and fear. The captain, with whom they sailed, 
was a drunken brutal fellow. Being met by a Turkish 
man-of-war, he resolved to fight, and prepared himself by 
copious draughts of brandy. The situation of the passen- 
gers was far from being enviable, for the vessel was so 
laden with goods that the guns were nearly useless. The 
women were ordered not to appear on deck, lest the 
Turks should suspect the vessel was not a ship of war. 
Mr. Fanshaw T e, with the other passengers, armed and 
went on deck. The captain, fearing the women would 
not remain quiet, locked the cabin-door. Mrs. Fanshawe 
was in a paroxysm of distress ; anxiety for her beloved 
husband made her absolutely frantic. For a long time 
she knocked and called aloud to no purpose ; in the con- 
fusion of the moment she was entirely disregarded. At 
length, the cabin-boy opened the door, and inquired what 
was wanted, In a passion of tears, Mrs. Fanshawe beg- 
ged him to lend her his tarred coat and blue thrum cap ; 
the boy consented ; and throwing him half a crown, she 
hastily equipped herself, and stole softly to the side of 
her husband. The two vessels were engaged in parley, 
and the commander of the Turkish galley finding the 
enemy well manned and armed, deemed it prudent to 



LADY F A N B TI A WE. 97 

about, without giving any proofs of hostility. Mr. 
Fanshawe did not observe bis companion in the tarred 
eoat, and thrum cap, until the danger was past, and he 

■ I to carry the news to the cabin. She Bays, " Look- 
in-- upon me, he blessed himself, and snatched me up in 
( I m! God ! thai love can make this 
change! 1 and though he seemingly chid me, he would 

be remembered that voyage." 
They arrived safely at Malaga, and passed through 

ada on their way to Madrid. She thus describes 
celebrated Moorish palace, called the Alhambra, 
where Columbus received promises of assistance from 
Ferdinand and Isabella, and where, nearly three centu- 
and i half after, Washington Irving lived and wrote : 
'•Th' day we went to Granada, having passed the 

hiffhi si mount tins I ever Baw in my life ; but under this 

the finesl valley that can he possibly described; 
adorn* d with high trees and rich grass, and beautified 
with a large, deep, clear river over the town ; here stand- 
eth the goodly, vast palace of the king's called the Al- 
hambra, whose buildings are, after the fashion of the 
Moors, adorned with vast quantities of jasper stone ; 
many courts, many fountains, and by reason it is situated 
on the side of a hill, and not built uniform, many gardens 
with ponds in them, and many baths made of jasper, and 
many principal rooms roofed with the mosaic work, which 
exceeds the finest enamel lever saw. Here I was show- 
ed in the midst of a very large piece of rich embroidery 
made by the Moors of Granada, in the middle as long as 
half a yard, of the true Tyrian dye, which is so glorious 
a colour that it cannot be expressed : it hath the glory of 
scarlet, the beauty of purple, and is so bright that when 
the eye is removed upon any other object it seems as 
6* 



93 GOOD WIVES, 

white as snow. The entry into this great palace is of 
stone, for a porter 's-lodge, but very magnificent, though 
the gate below, which is adorned with figures of forest- 
work, in which the Moors did transcend. High above 
this gate was a bunch of keys cut in stone likewise, with 
this motto : * Until that hand hold those keys, the Chris- 
tians shall never possess this Alhambra.' This was a 
prophecy they had, in which they animated themselves, 
by reason of the impossibility that ever they should meet. 
But see, how true there is a time for all things. It hap- 
pened that when the Moors were besieged in that place 
by Don Fernando and his Queen Isabella, the king with 
an arrow out of a bow, which they then used in war, 
shooting the first arrow as their custom is, cut that part of 
the stone that holds the keys, which was in fashion of a 
chain, and the keys falling, remained in the hand under- 
neath. This strange accident preceded but a few days 
the conquest of the town of Granada and the kingdom. 

11 They have in this place an iron grate, fixed into the 
side of the hill, that is a rock : I laid my head to the key 
hole and heard the clashing of arms, but could not distin- 
guish other shrill noises I heard with that, but tradition 
says it could never be opened since the Moors left it ; 
notwithstanding several persons had endeavoured to wrench 
it open, but that they had perished in the attempt. The 
truth of this T can say no more to ; but that there is such 
a gate, and I have seen it." 

Mr. Fanshawe did not succeed in obtaining a supply 
of money from the Spanish court ; and having no other 
business in that country he embarked with his family for 
France. It seemed as if every step of theirs was to 
be attended with peril. During this voyage they were 
nearly wrecked in a violent storm, and the sailors were 



I a D v I a M I i: -\ W B . 99 

ignorant and ohs'inate. Alter many dangers, they were 

landed at a little village about two league! from Nantz. 
They were obliged to Bit up all night, for want of hods; 
but they hardly (bought <>f this inconvenience, so joyful 

re they :it their unhoped for escape. Their supper 

consisted of white wine, bread, butter, milk, walnuts, 

. and bad cheese* They partook of these simple 

provisions m gladness of heart, repeating a thousand 

Diet what they had -aid to sack other when th 
thought every word might ho the last Mrs. Panshawe 

- she never till that moment know such exquisite 

sure in eating. 

In the autumn of this year Mr. Fanshawe was created 

baronet From Nantz the travellers proceeded to Orleans. 

11 iving hired a beat, they were towed up the river during 

the day, and every night went on shore to sleep. In the 

Hrning they carried wine, fruit, bread, fee., on hoard the 

aught fish fresh from the river, and prepared their 
breakfast Following the beautiful river of Loire, they 
were surrounded by the most agreeable and picturesque 

scenery — cities, castles, woods, meadows, and pastures. 
Lady Fanshawe frSSUtea US, She never found any mode of 
travelling bo pleasant as this. They were alone with 
nature; and she is always lovely. 

They arrived at Paris about the middle of November, 
1650. They were received with great kindness and re- 
spect by Henrietta Maria, the Queen Mother; indeed it 
was hardly possible for her to evince too much gratitude 
toward friends who had laboured without reward, and often 
without hope, in the cause of her husband and son. At 
her request Sir Richard Fanshawe undertook to convey 
letters from her to Charles the Second, then on his way 
to Scotland. 



100 GOOD WIVES. 

In the meantime Lady Fanshawe was again obliged 
to go to England to raise money. 

The fugitive king received his mother's messenger 
with marked kindness, giving him the custody of the 
Great Seal and Privy Signet. 

Lady Fanshawe remained in London, with very limit- 
ed resources, and two young children to maintain. The 
violent hostility of political parties in Scotland made her 
tremble for the safety of her husband ; she scarcely went 
out of her house for seven months, and spent much of 
her time in praying for the preservation of a life so pre- 
cious to her. On the 24th of June, another daughter 
was added to her cares and her blessings. Frequent 
visits from her affectionate father, and occasional letters 
from her husband, served to keep up her fortitude amid 
many discouragements. As soon as her health permitted, 
she made a visit to her brother Fanshawe, at Ware Park. 
Here she received tidings of the battle of Worcester. 
For three days she was unable to learn whether her hus- 
band were dead or alive ; and during this state of intol- 
erable suspense, she trembled at every sound, and neither 
ate nor slept. At last she knew that he was taken pri- 
soner ; and she immediately hastened to London, to meet 
him wheresoever he might be carried. On her arrival, 
she received a letter from him, informing her that he 
would be allowed to dine with her in a room at Charing 
Cross. The room and the dinner were prepared, accord- 
ing to appointment, and surrounded by her father and 
friends, the anxious wife waited impatiently for his arri- 
val. They met in poverty and in sorrow ; and there 
was an oppressive consciousness that each hour might be 
the last of the prisoner's life. He assumed a cheerful 
tone, saying, " Let us lose no time ; for I know not how 



LADY FANSHAWE. 101 

little I may have to spare. This is the chance of war ; 
so let us sit down and be merry while we may." But 
when he saw his wife in tears, his voice faltered, as he 
took her hand and said, " Cease weeping ; no other 
thing upon earth can move me ; remember we are all at 
God's disposal." ** 

During his imprisonment, she never failed to go se- 
cretly with a dark lantern, at four o'clock in the morn- 
ing to his window. She minded neither darkness nor 
storms, and often stood talking with him with her gar- 
ments drenched in rain. Cromwell had a great respect 
for Sir Richard Fanshawe, and would have bought him 
into his service upon almost any terms. 

When Lady Fanshawe went to him to beg her hus- 
band's release upon the ground of his declining health, 
he bade her bring a certificate from a physician that he 
was really ill ; it chanced that her family physician was 
likewise employed by Cromwell, and from him she ob- 
tained a statement very favourable to the prisoner. The 
subject was debated in the Council Chamber, and seve- 
ral gentlemen, particularly Sir Harry Yane, considered 
it dangerous to allow liberty to so confirmed and efficient 
a royalist ; but Cromwell was not disposed to be severe, 
and Sir Richard finally obtained his discharge upon four 
thousand pounds bail. 

The conduct of his faithful wife during the whole of 
this anxious crisis, was exceedingly beautiful and affect- 
ing. A few days after he obtained his freedom, he be- 
came so ill, that for many days and nights, he only slept 
as he leaned on her shoulder while she walked softly 
about the room. 

In March, 1653, they removed to Tankersly Park, in 
Yorkshire, which they hired of the Earl of Strafford. 



102 



GOOD WIVE S . 



Here Mr. Fanshawe devoted himself to literary pursuits, 
and translated the Lusiad of Camoens. The death of 
their oldest and favourite daughter, a child of great beau- 
ty and wit, the companion of all their vicissitudes, made 
this pleasant abode seem melancholy to them. 

They went into Huntingdonshire, and remained six 
months with his sister, Lady Bedell. 

Sir Richard Fanshawe having visited London, was 
forbidden to go more than five miles from the city ; his 
family accordingly joined him in the metropolis. 

For a few years, their lives past on, according to the 
ordinary routine of human affairs, affording few incidents 
of biography ; their family increased rapidly : and at one 
time they were both brought nearly to the grave by a 
malignant epidemic. 

In 1658, they received the tidings of Cromwell's death ; 
and Sir Richard Fanshawe, taking advantage of this 
event, left England under the pretence of becoming tutor 
to the Earl of Pembroke's son, then on his travels. 

When he arrived at Paris, he sent for his wife and 
children ; but when she applied for a passport, she was 
told that " her husband had escaped by means of a trick ; 
and as for his family, they should not stir out of London 
upon any conditions." 

In this dilemma, Lady Fanshawe taxed her ingenuity 
to find some means of eluding these peremptory com- 
mands. She was quite ready to depart, and if she could 
but obtain a passport, she might be in France before they 
would miss her. 

She changed her dress, and assuming great plainness 
of speech and manner, she went to the office where the 
passes were given, and very demurely told her story. 
She said her name was Ann Harrison ; that her husband 



LADY FANSHAWE. 103 

was a young merchant, and Lad sent for her to come to 
him in Paris. The man told her a passport would cost 
her a crown. She said that was a great sum for such a 
poor hody, and asked if he were not willing to include 
three children, a man servant, and a maid. The officer 
complied, saying as he did so, " a malignant would give 
me five pounds for such a pass." 

Thanking him kindly, she hastened to her lodgings, 
and changed the letters of her name so ingeniously, that 
Fanshawe appeared fairly written where Harrison had 
been. This done, she went with all possible despatch to 
Dover. There, the officers demanded her passport, after 
reading it, they said, " Madam, you. may go when you 
please ;" but one of them observed to the other, " I little 
thought they would have given a pass to the family of so 
great a malignant, in these troublesome times." 

She arrived safely at Calais, where she heard that mes- 
sengers had been despatched from London to bring her 
back. She met her husband at Paris, and followed him 
to Newport, Bruges, Ghent, and Brussels ; at which last 
place, the royal family of England were residing. 

After the restoration, the King promised to reward Sir 
Richard Fanshawe's fidelity by appointing him Secretary 
of State ; but by the treachery of Lord Clarendon the 
royal w T ord was not fulfilled. 

The morning after Charles's arrival at "Whitehall, 
Lady Fanshawe with the other ladies of her family, 
waited upon him to ofTer their congratulations ; on which 
occasion he assured her of his favour, conferred knight- 
hood on her husband, and gave him his miniature set in 
diamonds.^ 

* This miniature was taken in childhood, and was valuable 
because it was the only likeness of Charles II. taken at that 
period. 



104 GOOD WIVES. 

In the parliament summoned immediately after the 
Eestoration, Sir Richard Fanshawe was returned for the 
University of Cambridge, and was the very first member 
chosen in the House of Commons. 

Lord Clarendon, being jealous of the estimation in 
which Sir Richard was held by all parties, was anxious 
to remove him from the king's person. By his means he 
was sent to Portugal to negotiate the marriage with the 
Princess Catherine. Having finished this negotiation, he 
returned to England, and was sent to Portsmouth to 
receive the new queen, whose marriage they afterward 
witnessed. 

Early in 1662, he was nominated Privy Counsellor 
of Ireland ; and in the August following he was appointed 
Ambassador to Portugal. On this occasion he was pre- 
sented with a full length portrait of Charles the Second 
in his garter robes ; a crimson velvet cloth of state, 
fringed and laced with gold ; chair, footstools, and cush- 
ions of the same ; a Persian carpet to lay under them ; a 
suit of fine tapestry for the room ; two velvet altar cloths 
for the chapel, fringed with gold ; surplices, altar cloths 
and napkins of fine linen ; a Bible with Ogleby's prints ; 
two Prayer Books ; eight hundred ounces of gilt plate, 
and four thousand ounces of silver plate ; but a velvet 
bed, which Lady Fanshawe says belonged to the outfit 
of an ambassador, they did not receive. 

All the pageantry of their grand entry into Lisbon is 
minutely described ; and much is said of the respect and 
attention bestowed upon Lady Fanshawe and her daugh- 
ters by the royal family of Portugal. 

After a year's residence in Lisbon, Sir Richard was 
recalled. At parting, the King of Portugal presented him 
with gold plate to the value of twelve thousand crowns ; 



LADY FANS H AWE. 105 

and Lady Fanshawe received several magnificent gifts 
from other members of the royal family, and the nobility. 

An anecdote told of a nunnery where Lady Fanshawe 
visited, is an awful memento of the oppression and big- 
otry of those times. 

A Jewish mother was condemned and executed for her 
religion. Her newly born infant was taken from her, 
and brought up in the Esperanza. The child had no op- 
portunity of learning what a Jew was ; but the Catholics 
affirmed that she daily whipped the crucifixes, and 
scratched them, and run pins into them ; and when she 
was discovered in the act, she said she never would wor- 
ship their God. At fourteen years of age, the poor girl 
was burnt to death, upon the strength of these idle 
charges. 

In January, 1664, Sir Richard Fanshawe was appoint- 
ed Ambassador to Spain ; and again we have a minute 
description of the solemn pomp with which they were 
received on their arrival at a foreign court. The follow- 
ing account of a visit received by Lady Fanshawe is a 
sublime specimen of Spanish formality : " As soon as 
the Duke was seated and covered, he said, * Madam, I 
am Don Juan de la Cueva, Duke of Albuquerque, Vice- 
roy of Milan, of his Majesty's Privy Council, General of 
the Galleys, twice Grandee, the First Gentleman of his 
Mijesty's Bed Chamber, and a near kinsman to his Ca- 
tholic Majesty, whom God long preserve' — then rising 
up and making a low reverence with his hat off, he 
added, ' These, with my family and life, I lay at your 
Excellency's feet.' " 

The Duchess of Albuquerque afterward made a visit 
in state ; her intention being formally announced the day 
preceding. Beside other rich jewels, she wore about two 



106 GOOD WIVES. 

thousand pearls, of great size and purity. When Lady 
Fanshawe returned this visit, she was received by sol- 
diers, who stood to their arms, the officers lowering their 
standards to the ground, as they were wont to do in the 
presence of royalty. Indeed, the whole of Sir Richard's 
residence in Spain, was marked by almost regal splendour. 
His house was stored with abundance of rich gilt and 
silver plate ; all the floors were covered with Persian car- 
pets ; and the meanest apartment, devoted to the service 
of the chambermaid, was hung with damask. 

They were escorted into Seville by a very large pro- 
cession, and were lodged in the King's palace, where they 
slept on a silver bedstead, with curtains and counterpane 
of crimson damask embroidered with golden flowers. 
The tables and mirrors were adorned with precious stones, 
the chairs were of silver, and a large silver vase was 
daily filled with the rarest and most beautiful flowers. 

Similar magnificence characterised their reception in 
several Spanish cities ; and the gifts bestowed upon 
them by the nobility, and by the English residents, were 
right princely. But where presents of this kind are ac- 
cepted by ambassadors, it involves the necessity of some- 
what lavish expense in return ; and as Sir Richard Fan- 
shawe was of a very noble nature, it is not wonderful 
that he failed to amass a fortune in Spain. 

Perhaps some may be curious to know the Court dress 
of an ambassador from Charles the Second. When Sir 
Richard Fanshawe had his audience with the Spanish 
monarch, he wore a rich suit of dark brocade, with gold 
and silver lace of curious workmanship ; his suit was 
trimmed with scarlet taffety ribbon ; white silk stockings 
upon long scarlet silk ones : black shoes with scarlet 
shoe-strings and garters ; his linen trimmed with costly 



LADY FANSHAWE. 107 

Flanders lace ; his black beaver buttoned on the left side 
with a jewel worth twelve hundred pounds ; a curiously 
wrought gold chain, on which was suspended the minia- 
ture of Charles, glittering with diamonds ; his gloves 
trimmed with scarlet ribbons. The carriage was richly 
gilt on the outside, adorned with brass work, lined with 
crimson velvet, with broad gold lace ; and tassels of gold 
and silver looped up the damask curtains ; massive fringe 
of gold and silver hung from the boot almost to the ground ; 
the harness for four horses of embossed brass, the reins 
and tassels of crimson silk embroidered with gold. 

The other carriages and dresses were in a style of pro- 
portionate magnificence. If Lady Fanshawe is deemed 
frivolous for informing us of these particulars, it must be 
remembered she did not write for the public, but for her 
children, who would naturally be interested in everything 
relating to their parents. 

She says that neither she' nor her husband liked this 
ostentatious mode of life, and that they often sighed for 
a country residence in England. We can easily believe 
this assertion from a woman, who placed so much of her 
happiness in domestic affection. 

Lady Fanshawe had good features, and a clear, bright, 
intelligent expression, which announced the energy and 
vivacity of her character. The enduring attachment of 
her husband is a proof that she was agreeable in her 
manners, and amiable in her disposition : this likewise 
was implied by the Spanish Queen, who sent her a jewel 
of diamonds, worth about two thousand pounds sterling, 
with the assurance that she gave it not merely to the wife 
of a great king's ambassador, but to a lady for whom she 
entertained much respect, and in whose conversation she 
delighted. 



108 GOOD WIVES. 

The engraved portrait of Lady Fanshawe gives the 
idea that she was ambitious ; and the same inference may 
be drawn from the evident pride and pleasure with which 
she recounts her husband's honours; but after all, "am- 
bition is the infirmity of noble minds." 

The various scenes of her eventful life are recorded 
with remarkable simplicity, and not without occasional 
touches of poetic beauty. 

The most brilliant portion of her existence was passed 
in Spain ; and she speaks of that romantic country in 
terms of enthusiastic praise. She says their fruits are 
the most delicious, their bread the sweetest, the water of 
their fountains the coolest and purest, their perfumes the 
most exquisite, and their wines richer than any in the 
Christian world; the higher classes magnificent in their 
habits, and all classes generous and hospitable. Among 
the seven courts in which it had been Lady Fanshawe's 
lot to reside, she declares that of Madrid to be the best 
ordered, excepting the English. She tells us " the Span- 
iards are the most jolly travellers in the world, dealing 
out provisions of all sorts to everybody they meet at their 
meals. They are civil to all, as their qualities require, 
with the highest respect. I have seen a grandee and a 
duke stop their horse when an ordinary woman passeth 
over a kennel, because he would not spoil her clothes ; 
and put off his hat to the meanest woman that makes a 
reverence, though it be their footman's wife." 

Lady Fanshawe thus describes the royal cemetery in 
the church of the Escurial : " ThereT saw the most glo- 
rious place for the covering of the bones of the kings of 
Spain, that is possible to imagine. The descent is about 
thirty steps, all of polished marble, arched and lined on 
all sides with polished jasper. On the left hand is a large 



LADY FANSHAWE. 109 

vault in which the bodies of their kings, and of the 
queens that have been mothers of kings, lie in silver cof- 
fins for one year. On the opposite side lie the Queens, 
who had no sons at their death, and all the children that 
did not inherit. At the bottom of the stairs is the Pan- 
theon, eight feet square, and I should guess about sixty- 
feet over. The whole lining is of jasper, curiously 
carved in figures, flowers, and imagery. A silver branch 
for forty lights, which is vastly rich, hangs from the top 
by a silver chain, within three yards of the bottom, and 
is made with great art ; as is also a curious knot of jas- 
per on the floor, in the reflection of which the branch 
and its lights are perfectly seen. The bodies lie in jas- 
per stones, every coffin supported by four lions of jasper. 
There are seven arches supported by jasper pillars, with 
roofs curiously wrought. The one opposite the entrance 
contains a very curious altar and crucifix of jasper." 

In December, 1665, Sir Richard Fanshawe signed a 
treaty with the Spanish minister, but as the king refused 
to ratify it, he was recalled. The May following he es- 
corted his successor, the Earl of Sandwich, into Madrid, 
and welcomed him to Court. The necessary prepara- 
tions were soon made for their return to England ; but on 
June 26th, Sir Richard Fanshawe died of a malignant 
fever, after a short illness. 

He felt his recall deeply, because he thought it was 
occasioned by the misrepresentations of his enemies, and 
some supposed it hastened his death ; but Lady Fanshawe 
says nothing to favour such a supposition. 

It is indeed true that Sir Richard, in common with 
other adherents of the house of Stuart, met with an un- 
grateful return for all his services. During the latter 
part of his residence in Spain, he was obliged to pawn 
7 



110 GOOD WIVES- 

his plate for subsistence, being unable to obtain his just 
allowance from government. 

The desolate situation of the almost heart-broken widow 
excited much commiseration. The Queen of Spain 
offered her a pension of thirty thousand ducats per annum, 
and a handsome provision for her children, if they would 
remain with her, and embrace the Catholic religion. 
Lady Fanshawe replied that she should retain a most 
grateful sense of her kindness to the latest hour of 
her life ; but begged her Majesty to believe that it was 
not possible for her to quit the faith in which she had 
been born and bred. Her own language will best por- 
tray her feelings under this severe affliction : * O, all 
powerful and good God, look down from heaven upon 
the most distressed wretch on earth. My glory and my 
guide, all my comfort in this life is taken from me. See 
me staggering in my path, because I expected a temporal 
blessing as a reward for the great innocence and integ- 
rity of his whole life. Have pity on me, O Lord, and 
speak peace to my disquieted soul, now sinking under 
this great weight, which without thy support cannot sus- 
tain itself. See me with five children, a distressed fam- 
ily, the temptation of the change of my religion, out of 
my country, away from my friends, without counsel, and 
without means to return with my sad family to England. 
Do with me, and for me, what thou pleasest ; for I do 
wholly rely on thy promises to the widow and the father- 
less ; humbly beseeching thee, that when this mortal life 
is ended, I may be joined with the soul of my dear hus- 
band." 

The body of Sir Richard Fanshawe was embalmed ; 
and for several months his widow had it daily in her 
sight. It was her wish to accompany the corpse to Eng- 



LADY FANSHAWE. Ill 

; bul for a long time they had received no money 
from government ; and now in the midst of her affliction, 
surrounded by her little children, with a young babe in 
her arms, no assistance was offered by her ungrateful 
king ; and the ministers sent only complimentary letters 
bidding " God help her." 

At this anxious crisis, the Spanish Queen Regent, 
Anne of Austria, widow of Phillip the Fourth, gave her 
two thousand pistoles, saying, with great delicacy, that 
the sum had been appropriated to purchasing a farewell 
present for her husband, had he lived to depart from 
Spain. 

After distributing articles of value among her numerous 
friends, Lady Fanshawe quitted Madrid, on the 8th of 
July, 1666. She pathetically observes, " Truly may I 
say never any ambassador's family came into Spain 
more gloriously, or went out so sad." 

The mournful train arrived in England on the 30th of 
October. The body was buried, with a good deal of 
pomp, in the vault of St. Mary's Chapel, in Ware Church. 
His widow erected a handsome monument to his memory. 

Sir Richard Fanshawe was fifty-nine years old when 
he died, and had lived in happy union with his excellent 
wife during twenty-two years. 

Lady Fanshawe received many professions of kind- 
ness and sympathy from the king, the queen, and some 
of the ministers ; but she had great trouble in procuring 
the money due to her husband. The heartless and pro- 
fligate Charles found his pleasures too expensive to leave 
anything in his treasury for the tried friends, who had 
been faithful to him when fidelity endangered life ; who 
for thirty years had been devoted to his service, braving 
all manner of perils by land and sea ; and who had ex- 
pended a fortune in his cause. 



112 GOOD WIVE S. 

The difficulty of obtaining the arrears due to Sir 
Richard Fanshawe were considerably increased by the 
death of the Lord Treasurer, the Earl of Southampton, 
father of Lady Russell. The widow says, " In conse- 
quence of losing that good man and friend, my money, 
which was five thousand six hundred pounds, was not 
paid until 1669 ;" by this delay she sustained a loss of 
two thousand pounds. She speaks with great bitterness 
of Lord Shaftesbury, at whose instigation she was obliged 
to pay two thousand pounds for the plate furnished to the 
embassy. 

Her first object was to reduce her establishment accord- 
ing to her altered r ortunes. She says, " As it is hard 
for the rider to quit his horse in full career, so did I find 
it very difficult to settle myself suddenly within the nar- 
row compass my fortune required." But Lady Fanshawe 
had too much rectitude of principle to live beyond her 
income, however scanty. Even in the days of their ut- 
most distress, ihey had never incurred debts ; a circum- 
stance that was not a little remarkable when the poverty 
of a large portion of the royalists was only exceeded by 
their dissipation and dishonest extravagance. 

Had it not have been for her children, the disconsolate 
widow w 7 ould have withdrawn herself entirely from the 
world ; she lived in as much seclusion as their education 
and interests permitted. 

Her father lost one hundred and thirty thousand pounds 
in the royal cause ; but when he died in 1670, he was 
enabled to leave her twenty thousand pounds, beside the 
estates, which were inherited by her brother. 

Lady Fanshawe was the mother of six sons and eight 
daughters ; five of whom survived her. 

She wrote her Memoir " for her dear and only son," 
in 1676 ; and died, January, 1680, in her fifty- fifth year. 



MRS. FLAXMAN, 

WIFE OF JOHN FLAXMAN. 

The name of John Flaxman is among the most dis- 
tinguished of British Sculptors ; and after reading an 
account of his life, by his eloquent biographer, Allan 
Cunningham, one cannot refrain from believing that the 
world never contained a better man. 

His mind was earnest, enthusiastic, and highly poetic ; 
his temper serene ; his affections warm and benevolent ; 
and his whole character shone with the angelic light of 
pure disinterestedness, and cheerful piety. Religion was 
not with him a thing set apart for occasional use, regard- 
ed only for the sake of the world's opinion, or because 
the world has lost its attractions — it was the vivifying 
principle of his existence — it guided every feeling, was 
blended with every thought, and passed into every action. 
In this dishonest, hypocritical world, a simple-minded, 
sincere man must necessarily be considered very peculiar ; 
and John Flaxman was so regarded. He was peculiar in 
his religious opinions ; being a receiver of the doctrines 
of the New Jerusalem, or, in other words, a believer in 
the writings of Swedenborg. Much of the simplicity 
and spirituality of his character is reflected in his mar- 
bles and his drawings ; they are remarkable for an ex- 
pression of serene loveliness and quiet devotion. His 
favourite works were those by which he embodied passages 
of Scripture. In early life, Flaxman was poor, and his 
* 7* 



114 GOOD WIVES. 

health feeble. He used to support himself by making 
drawing and designs for the celebrated porcelain manu- 
factory of the Wedgwoods. When he became eminent, 
he loved to allude to these bumble labours of his early life ; 
and since his death the models have been eagerly sought 
after. But though Flaxman was largely endowed with 
genius, he found no royal road to fame. He met with 
mortifications and disappointments, and gained final suc- 
cess only by the most laborious industry. " From his 
twentieth to his twenty-seventh year, he lived, as all 
young artists must do, who have no other fortune than 
clear heads and clever hands. His labours for the Wedg- 
woods maintained him ; but he was no lover of jovial 
circles, and was abstemious in all things save a hunger- 
ing and thirsting for knowledge." 

" In the year 1782, when twenty-seven years old, he 
quitted the paternal roof, hired a small house and studio 
in Wardour street, collected a stock of choice models, set 
his sketches in good order, and took unto himself a wife, 
Ann Denman, one whom he had long loved, and one who 
well deserved his affection. She was amiable and ac- 
complished, had a taste for art and literature, was skilful 
in French and Italian, and, like her husband, had ac- 
quired some knowledge of the Greek. But what was 
better than all, she was an enthusiastic admirer of his 
genius — she cheered and encouraged him in his moments 
of despondency — regulated modestly and prudently his 
domestic economy — arranged his drawings — managed 
now and then his correspondence, and acted in all particu- 
lars so that it seemed as if the church, in performing a 
marriage, had accomplished a miracle, and blended them 
really into one flesh and one blood. That tranquillity of 
mind, so essential to those who live by thought, was of 



MRS. FLAX MAN. 115 

his b(in<pho]d ; and the sculptor, hnppy in the company 
of one who had taste and enthusiasm, soon renewed with 
double »eal the stadies which cotrrtsilip and matrimony 
had tor a tune interrupted. He had never doubted that 
in the company of her whom he loved he should be able 
to work with an intenscr spirit ; but of another opinion 
was Sir Jadhua Reynolds. ' So, Flaxman,' said the 
President one da v. as he chanced to meet him, ' I am told 
you are married; if so, sir, I tell you you are ruined for 
aU artist. Flaxman went home, sat down beside his wife, 
took her hand, and said with a smile, * I am ruined for an 
artist.' 'John,' said she, ' how has this happened, and 
who has done it ?' ' It happened,' said he, ' in the church, 
and Ann Denman has done it ; I met Sir Joshua Rey- 
nolds just now, and he said marriage had ruined me in 
my profession.' 

" For a moment a cloud hung on Flaxman's brow ; 
but this worthy couple understood each other too well, to 
have their happiness seriously marred by the unguarded 
and peevish remark of a wealthy old bachelor. They 
were proud, determined people, who asked no one's ad- 
vice, who shared their domestic secrets with none of their 
neighbours, and lived as if they were unconscious that they 
were in the midst of a luxurious city. * Ann,' said the 
sculptor, ' I have long thought that I could not rise to dis- 
tinction in art without studying in Italy, but these words 
of Reynolds have determined me. I shall go to Rome as 
soon as my affairs are fit to be left ; and to show him that 
wedlock is for a man's good, rather than his harm, you 
shall accompany me. If I remain here, I shall be accused 
of ignorance concerning those noble works of art which 
are to the sight of a sculptor what learning is to a man 
of genius, and you will lie under the charge of detaining 



116 GOOD WIVES. 

me.' In this resolution Mrs. Flaxman fully concurred. 
They resolved to prepare themselves in silence for the 
journey, to inform no one of their intentions, and to set 
meantime a still stricter watch over their expenditure. 
No assistance was proffered by the Academy, nor was 
any asked ; and five years elapsed, from the day of the 
memorable speech of the President, before Flaxman, by 
incessant study and labour, had accumulated the means of 
departing for Italy. 

" The image of Flaxman's household immediately after 
his marriage is preserved in the description of one who 
respected his genius and his worth. ' I remember him 
well, so do I his wife, and also his humble little house in 
Wardour street. All was neat, nay, elegant ; the figures 
from which he studied were the fairest that could be had, 
and all in his studio was propriety and order. But what 
struck me most was that air of devout quiet which reign- 
ed everywhere ; the models which he made, and the de- 
signs which he drew, were not more serene than he was 
himself; and his wife had that meek composure of man- 
ner which he so much loved in art. Yet better than all, 
was the devout feeling of this singular man ; there was 
no ostentatious display of piety, nay, he was in some sort 
a lover of mirth and sociality, but he was a reader of the 
Scriptures, and a worshipper of sincerity, and if ever 
purity visited the earth, she resided with John Flaxman.' " 

At Rome, Flaxman, like most other artists, was obliged 
to do something for his support. He was employed by 
persons of his own nation to make illustrations of Homer, 
iEschylus, and Dante. These splendid works procured 
him extensive reputation.- " The Illustrations of Homer 
were made for Mrs. Hare Nayler, at the price of some 
fifteen shillings a-piece ; but the fame which they brought 



MRS. FLAXMAN, 117 

to the name of Flaxman was more than a recompense. 
Long ere this time of life, he had shown, in numerous 
instances, that he regarded gold only as a thing to barter 
for food and raiment, and which enabled him to realize, 
in benevolent deeds, the generous wishes of his heart. 
As a fountain whence splendour, honour, and respect 
might flow, he never considered it — and in a plain dress, 
and from a frugal table, he appeared among the rich and 
the titled, neither seeking their notice nor shunning it. 
In all these sentiments his wife shared. Those who de- 
sire to see Flaxman aright during his seven years' study 
in Italy, must not forget to admit into the picture the 
modest matron who was ever at his side, aiding him by 
her knowledge and directing him by her taste. She was 
none of those knowing dames who hold their lords in a 
sort of invisible vassalage, or with submission on their 
lips, and rebellion in their hearts, make the victim walk 
as suits their sovereign will and pleasure. No — they 
loved each other truly — they read the same books — 
thought the same thoughts — prized the same friends — 
and, like bones of the same bosom, were at peace with 
each other, and had no wish to be separated. Their resi- 
dence was in the Via Felice ; and all who wished to be 
distinguished for taste or genius were visitors of the sculp- 
tor's humble abode. 

" After a residence of more than seven years in Rome, 
Flaxman returned to England, hired a modest house in 
Buckingham Street ; erected shops and studios ; arranged 
his models and his marbles ; and resolved to try his for- 
tune in poetic sculpture." " For this," says the poet 
Campbell, " he had an expansion of fancy, elevation of 
thought, a holy beauty of feeling. His female forms 
may want finished luxuriance, but they have a charm 



118 GOOD WIVES. 

more expressive and inexpressible, from the vestal purity 
of his sentiment, than finish could have given them." 

Those who had hitherto supposed Sir Joshua Reynolds 
was in the right, when he said wedlock must spoil Flax- 
man for an artist, now began to think they could derive 
some honour from being associated with him ; and he 
was unanimously elected a member of the Royal Acad- 
emy. His fame was now so well established, that he 
might have associated with the noble and the wealthy 
had his meek and placid character allowed him to form 
such wishes. But he loved his home, and gave himself 
up to the quiet, tasteful amusements of his own fireside. 
Sir Thomas Lawrence said, " His solitude was made 
enjoyment to him by a fancy teeming with images of 
tenderness, purity, or grandeur.'' Drawing was at once 
his business and his recreation. His biographer says, 
" there is a prodigious affluence of imagination in all his 
sketches and drawings ; and his shops, studio, and sketch- 
books exhibit them in hundreds — nay, in thousands. To 
name all his sketches would occupy many pages, and to 
describe them, at the rate of five lines to each, would be 
to compose a volume. Some of his illustrations of the 
Pilgrim's Progress equal that religious romance in sim- 
plicity, and far surpass it in loftiness ; something of the 
same sort may be said of his designs for Sotheby's trans- 
lation of Oberon — forty in number. But the work on 
which his fancy most delighted to expatiate was Hesiod. 
He loved the days of innocence and the age of gold, when 
philosophers went barefooted, kings held the plough, 
princesses washed their own linen, and poets sung, like 
the northern minstrel, for food and raiment. There are 
thirty-six illustrations ; and for simplicity, loveliness, and 
grace, they fairly rival any of his other works." 



MRS. FLAXMAN, 119 

In dress Flaxman was as plain as if he belonged to the 
Society of Friends. Unlike most of his brother artists, 
he kept no coach or servants in livery. To the men he 
employed, he was extremely liberal and kind. " When 
they were ill, he continued their wages, and paid their 
doctor's bill. He made himself acquainted with their 
wants, and with their families, and aided them in the 
roost agreeable and delicate way. If any of them were 
unavoidably absent, he said, ' Providence made six days 
for work in the week ; take your full wages.' He was 
so generally beloved, and so widely known, that if you 
stopped a tipsy mason in the street, and asked him what 
he thought of John Flaxman, he would answer, ' The 
best master God ever made.' No alloy of meanness min* 
gled with his nature. He has been known to return part 
of the money for a monument when he thought the price 
too high. 

An eminent artist said of him, " Flaxman is inaccessi- 
ble either to censure or praise — he is proud but not shy ; 
diffident but not retiring — as plain as a peasant in his 
dress, and as humble as the rudest clown, yet even all 
that unites in making up this remarkable mixture of sim- 
plicity and genius — and were you to try any other ingre- 
dients, may I be hanged if you would form so glorious a 
creature !" He paused a little, and added, " I wish he 
would not bow so low to the lowly — his civility oppresses." 

A distinguished sculptor being asked concerning Flax- 
man's mode of study and his conversation, replied, " I can- 
not tell you. He lived as if he did not belong to the 
world — his ways were not our ways. He had odd fash- 
ions — he dressed — you know how he dressed ; he dined 
at one — wrought after dinner, which no other artist does 
— drank tea at six ; and then, sir, no one ever found him 



120 GOOD WIVES. 

in the evening parties of the rich or the noble : he was 
happy at home, and so he kept himself; of all the mem- 
bers of the Academy, the man whom I know least of is 
Flaxman." 

His conversation was more frequently lively, gay, and 
eloquent than serious. The following circumstance will 
give an idea of the sports of fancy in which he sometimes 
indulged. He once bought a small Chinese casket, of 
very rich workmanship, and gave it to his wife and sis- 
ter. The ladies placed it upon the table before them, 
and while the sculptor was sketching, began to talk about 
the present. " This is a pretty thing," said one, " and 
not made yesterday either : its history must be curious." 
" Curious, no doubt," said the other, " we can easily make 
a history for it. What is it without its genealogy ? — was 
it not made in the reign of the illustrious Ching-Fu, by 
one of the muses of China, to hold the golden maxims 
of Confucius ?" " And obtained in barter," continued 
the other, " for glass beads and twopenny knives, by one 
of those wandering genii called in Britain trading cap- 
tains ?" Flaxman smiled at this history, and forthwith 
set to work with pen and pencil. 

He composed a poem of some hundred lines describ- 
ing the adventures of the casket. A princess of China 
is informed by a nightingale that there is a splendid cas- 
ket in the bowers of paradise, guarded by genii — she ob- 
tains the wonderful treasure — a magician, riding through 
the air on winged tigers, washes to fill the box with spells 
and magic — The princess and her sisters hurl the en- 
chanter down amid hissing serpents and sulphurous flame. 

The casket is deposited on Mount Hermon — the genii 
bestow it on a good poet, who fills it with virtuous max- 
ims and verses, and an angel guards it. The poet dies, 



MRS. FLAXMAN. 121 

and another has possession of it ; at first his strains are 
pure and virtuous ; but he indulges in wanton thoughts, 
and indignant angels snatch the casket away — They float 
through the air with the precious burden, and deliver it to 
the sea-maids and tritons, who with shout and song con- 
vey it across the ocean ; the Genius of the British Isle 
finally receives it. Ten sketches in pencil illustrated the 
story. 

A similar effort of his genius, was dedicated to his 
wife, in a manner alike affectionate and tasteful. 

He caused a quarto volume to be made, in which he 
wrote the story and illustrated the adventures of a Chris- 
tian hero, who goes out into the world to protect the 
weak, aid the suffering, and punish the bad. Tempta- 
tions in every form surround him — good and evil spirits 
contend for victory — his own passions are around him in 
terrific shapes — he follows a guardian angel, and escapes 
all dangers — becomes a purified spirit, and is commission- 
ed to watch over the good on earth. In this capacity he 
spreads spiritual light around, watches over innocence, 
and protects the oppressed. 

The sketches, which are forty in number, are delicate, 
graceful, full of poetic beauty, and surrounded as it were, 
by a serene and holy atmosphere. " On the first page 
of this book was drawn a dove, with an olive-branch in 
her mouth ; an angel is on each side, and between is 
written, ' To Ann Flaxman ;' below, two hands are clasp- 
ed, as at the altar, two cherubs bear a garland, and the 
following inscription to his wife introduces the subject : 
* The anniversary of your birthday calls on me to be 
grateful for fourteen happy years passed in your society. 
Accept the tribute of these sketches, which, under the al- 
legory of a knight errant's adventures, indicate the trials 



122 GOOD WIVES. 

of virtue and the conquest of vice, preparatory to a hap- 
pier state of existence.' After the hero is called to the 
spiritual world, and blest with a celestial union, he is 
armed with power, for the exercise of his ministry, and 
for fulfilling the dispensations of Providence ; he becomes 
the associate of Faith, Hope, and Charity, and, as uni- 
versal Benevolence, is employed in acts of mercy. John 
Flaxman, October 2, 1796." 

" For thirty-eight years Flaxman lived wedded. His 
health was generally good, his spirits ever equal ; and 
his wife, to whom his fame was happiness, had been al- 
ways at his side. She was a most cheerful, intelligent 
woman, a collector too of drawings and sketches, and an 
admirer of Stothard, of whose designs and prints she had 
amassed more than a thousand. Her husband paid her 
the double respect due to affection and talent, and when 
any difficulty in composition occurred, he would say, with 
a smile, ' Ask Mrs. Flaxman, she is my dictionary.' She 
maintained the simplicity and dignity of her husband, 
and refused all presents of paintings, or drawings, or 
books, unless some reciprocal interchange were made. 
It is almost needless to say that Flaxman loved such a 
woman very tenderly. The hour of their separation ap- 
proached — she fell ill and died in the year 1820, and from 
the time of this bereavement something like a lethargy 
came over his spirit. 

" He was now in his sixty-sixth year, and surrounded 
with the applause of the world. His studios were filled 
with orders and commissions. His sister — a lady of taste 
and talent like his own — and his wife's sister, were of his 
household ; but she who had shared all his joys and sor- 
rows was gone, and nothing could comfort him." 

He continued, however, the same habits of industry, 



MRS. FLAXMAN. 123 

the same kind interest in the situation and wishes of oth- 
ers, the same cheerful intercourse with his few cherished 
friends. His health was feeble, but he suffered little. 

One morning a stranger called upon him, and, present- 
ing a book, said, " This work was sent to you by an Ital- 
ian artist, and I am requested to apologise for its extraordi- 
nary dedication. It was generally believed throughout 
Italy that you were dead ; and my friend, wishing to 
show the world how much he esteemed your genius, 
has inscribed his book ■ Al omlra di Flaxman? [To the 
shade of Flaxman.] No sooner was it published, than 
the report of your death was contradicted ; and the author, 
affected by his mistake, (which he rejoices to find a mis- 
take) begs you will receive his work as an apology." 

Flaxman smiled — accepted the volume with unaffected 
modesty, and mentioned the circumstance as curious to 
his own family, and some of his friends." 

This singular occurrence happened on the 2d of De- 
cember. The next day he took a cold, from which he 
never recovered. He died peacefully, as he had lived. 
The following words are inscribed on his tomb. 

" John Flaxman, R. A. P. S., whose mortal life was 
a constant preparation for a blessed immortality ; his 
angelic spirit returned to the Divine Giver, on the 7th of 
December, 1826, in the seventy-second year of his age." 
" Peace be with the memory of him who died," as Sir 
Thomas Lawrence happily said, " in his own small circle 
of affection ; enduring pain, but full of meekness, grati- 
tude, and faith !" 



MRS. BLAKE, 

WIFE OF WILLIAM BLAKE. 

William Blake, the "painter, was the intimate friend 
of Flaxman, and was one of the most singular men that 
ever lived. All his productions whether of the pen, or 
the pencil, were characterized by a sublime mistiness, a 
wild obscurity, a strange incomprehensible beauty. It 
seemed as if he were a spirit returned from the regions 
of the dead, bringing with him recollections too glorious 
and too awful to be embodied by human genius, yet 
through his whole life struggling to express his concep- 
tions, as we strive to speak in our dreams. 

He lived in a visionary world, and, according to his own 
account, visions were ever around him. One evening 
when a friend called upon him he whispered, " Disturb 
me not, I have one sitting to me." " I see no one !" ex- 
claimed his friend. " But I see him, sir/' answered 
Blake ; " There he is — his name is Lot ; you may read 
of him in the Scripture. He is sitting for his portrait." 

Innumerable were the spiritual visitants, whom he por- 
trayed on canvas. He had a very rich and peculiar mode 
of engraving and tinting his plates, which he said was 
revealed to him by the spirit of his deceased brother ; he 
kept the secret to himself, and other artists have been 
unable to discover it. 

His poetic mind threw its own glowing colouring over 
the most ordinary occurrences of life. " Did you ever 



MRS. BLAKE. 125 

see a fairy's funeral, madam?" he once said to a lady, 
who happened to sit by him in company. " Never, sir !' 
was the answer. " 1 have," said Blake, " but not before 
last night. I was walking alone in my garden, there 
was great stillness among the branches and flowers, and 
more than common sweetness in the air; I heard a low 
and pleasant sound, and I knew not whence it came. At 
last I saw the broad leaf of a flower move, and underneath 
I saw a procession of creatures of the size and colour of 
green and gray grasshoppers, bearing a body laid out on 
a rose leaf, which they buried with songs, and then dis- 
appeared. It was a fairy funeral." 

His high aspirations and brilliant fancies must have 
come from the world within him ; for he had few oppor- 
tunities to observe those beautiful and magnificent pro- 
ductions, in which genius has given shadowy revelations 
of what it has dreamed in heaven. 

His earlier and his later lot w T as poverty. He was in- 
dustrious ; but he would work in his own wild freedom, and 
patrons did not understand him. Besides, he considered 
a love of gain as the destroying angel of all that is god- 
like in human nature. " Were I to love money," he 
said, " I should lose all power of thought; desire of gain 
deadens the genius of man. I might roll in wealth and 
ride in a golden chariot, w r ere I to listen to the voice of 
parsimony. My business is not to gather gold, but to 
make glorious shapes, expressing godlike sentiments." 

His father was a respectable hosier, who intended his 
son for the same trade ; but between the rival attractions 
of poetry and painting, the lad was, as the Scotch say, 
"clean daft;" and it was deemed prudent to apprentice 
him to an engraver. I will give the account of his mar- 

8 



126 



GOOD WIVES, 



riage in the words of Allan Cunningham : for the simple 
reason that it is impossible for me to do it so well, 

" When he was six-and-twenty years old, he married 
Katharine Boutcher, a young woman of humble connex- 
ions, the dark-eyed Kate of several of his lyric poems. 
She lived near his father's house, and was noticed by 
Blake for the whiteness of her hand, the brightness of 
her eyes, and a slim and handsome shape, corresponding 
with his own notions of sylphs and naiads. As he was 
an original in all things, it would have been out of char- 
acter to fall in love like an ordinary mortal : he was de- 
scribing one evening in company the pains he had suf- 
fered from some capricious lady or another, when Kath- 
arine Boutcher said, ' I pity you from my heart.' ' Do 
you pity me ?' said Blake, ' then I love you for that/ 
' And I love you,' said the frank-hearted lass, and so the 
courtship began. He tried how well she looked in a 
drawing, then how her charms became verse ; and find- 
ing moreover that she had good domestic qualities, he 
married her. They lived together long and happily. 

" She seemed to have been created on purpose for 
Blake : she believed him to be the finest genius on earth; 
she believed in his verse ; she believed in his designs ; 
and to the wildest flights of his imagination she bowed 
the knee and was a worshipper. She set his house in 
good order, prepared his frugal meal, learned to think as 
he thought, and, indulging him in his harmless absurdi- 
ties, became, as it were, bone of his bone, and flesh of 
his flesh. She learned — what a young and handsome 
woman is seldom apt to learn — to despise gaudy dresses, 
costly meals, pleasant company, and agreeable invitations 
— she found out the way of being happy at home, living 
on the simplest of food, and contented in the homeliest 



MRS BLAKE. 127 

of clothing. It was no ordinary mind which could do 
all this ; and she whom Blake emphatically called his 
* beloved,' was no ordinary woman. She wrought off in 
the press the impressions of his plates — she coloured 
them with a light and neat hand — made drawings much 
in the spirit of his compositions, and almost rivalled him 
in all things, save in the power which he possessed of 
seeing visions of any individual living or dead, whenever 
he chose to see them. 

" Many of his noblest productions were accomplished 
' in a small room, which served him for kitchen, bed- 
chamber, and study, where he had no other companion 
but his faithful Katharine, and no larger income than 
seventeen or eighteen shillings a week.' He was not a 
man to grow rich as he grew older, and he must have 
suffered in the decline of life, had not his brother artists 
assisted him. Engraving by day, and seeing visions by 
night, he attained his seventy-first year, and the strength 
of nature was fast yielding. Yet he was to the last 
cheerful and contented. ' I glory, 5 he said, ' in dying, 
and have no grief but in leaving you, Katharine ; we 
have lived happy, and we have lived long ; we have been 
ever together, but we shall be divided soon. Why should 
I fear death ? nor do I fear it. I have endeavoured to 
live as Christ commands, and have sought to worship 
God truly — in my own house, when I was not seen of 
men.' He grew weaker and weaker — he could no longer 
sit upright ; and was laid in his bed, with no one to 
watch over him, save his wife, who, feeble and old her- 
self, required help in such a touching duty." 

The Ancient of Days was such a favourite with Blake, 
that three days before his death, he sat bolstered up in 
bed, and tinted with his choicest colours, and in his hap- 



128 GOOD WIVES 

piest style. He touched and retouched it — held it at arm's 
length, and then threw it from him, exclaiming, " There ! 
that will do ! I cannot mend it." He saw his wife in 
tears — she felt that this was to be the last of his works. 

" Stay, Kate ! " cried Blake, " keep just as you are — 
I will draw your portrait — for you have ever been an 
angel to me." She obeyed, and the dying artist made a 
fine likeness. 

The very joyfulness with which this singular man 
welcomed the coming of death, made his dying moments 
intensely mournful. He lay chanting songs, and the 
verses and the music were both the offspring of the mo- 
ment. He lamented that he could no longer commit 
those inspirations, as he called them, to paper. " Kate," 
he said, " I am a changing man — I always rose and wrote 
down my thoughts, whether it rained, snowed, or shone; 
and you arose too and sat beside me — this can be no 
longer." He died on the 12th of August, 1828, without 
any visible pain — his wife, who sat watching him, did 
not perceive when he ceased breathing. 



MADAME LUTHER, 

WIFE OF MARTIN LUTHER. 

It would be unnecessary to speak of Luther as a Re- 
former, even if the characters and proceedings of public 
men were connected with the purposes of this volume : 
his biography forms a part of the world's history, and 
marks one of the grandest epochs in the progress of the 
human mind. We hardly need to be told that he was 
learned, enthusiastic and daring; for we instantly feel 
that none but such a man could, or would, have under- 
taken the great work he performed. The reformation of 
extensive evils, — evils sanctioned by self-interest and susr 
tained by power, — has always been effected by indivi- 
duals bold and zealous even to rashness. The timid and 
the cautious fall into the ranks when the danger is over, 
and often share the triumph ; but what the world calls 
" a prudent man," would never answer for a pioneer in 
the cause either of civil or religious liberty. There is 
always a vast mass of energy and talent lying latent in 
the community; and it is a beautiful feature in God's 
providence, that the progress of events inevitably pro- 
duces the very characters, and elicits the very qualities, 
that are most needed. 

In the sixteenth century, a strong and fearless champion 
was required against the insupportable tyranny and gross 
corruptions of the Church of Rome ; and the excess of 
papal pride prepared the way for its own destruction by 
kindling the impetuous indignation of Martin Luther. 



130 GOOD WIVES. 

Fortunately for the world, the active mind of this great 
man, was never subjected to the enervating influences of 
wealth and luxury. He was born in an obscure village 
of Saxony, in the year 1483 ; his father was a miner. 
At fourteen years of age when he was at school in Eisen- 
ach, he was obliged with other poor students, to gain a 
living by singing before the doors of houses. He used 
to call this " bread music." But although he had an 
uncommonly fine voice, he did not always obtain a sup- 
per for a song ; and sometimes he met with proud refus- 
als, and unkind reproaches, exceedingly grievous to his 
noble and independent nature. One day when he was 
entirely overcome with dejection, and' shame, the wife of 
a worthy citizen, named Conrad Cotta, took pity upon 
him, and refreshed him liberally with food. His man- 
ners prepossessed the good woman so much in his favour 
that she obtained her husband's permission to take him 
into the house, and provide for him until he was fitted 
for the university. 

After staying three years at Eisenach, he went to the 
University of Erfurt. Here he soon became renowned 
for his scholarship. It was his father's wish that he 
should study law ; but several fits of illness, and the loss 
of an intimate friend, who was struck dead at his side by 
lightning, spread something of gloom over his mind, and 
he suddenly resolved to become a monk. His parents, who 
were very pious and sensible people, tried in vain to dis- 
suade him from what he deemed a conscientious sacrifice 
to God. He strictly fulfilled his monastic duties, even to 
the humiliating task of standing porter at the door, and 
going through the town to beg alms for the convent ; but 
it was a course of life which ill-suited his free and active 
temper; and a heaviness, which he could not dispel, took 
possession of his spirit. 



MME. LUTHER. 131 

He was removed from these depressing influences by 
the friendship of a nobleman, who recommended him as 
a public teacher of philosophy in the University at Wit- 
temberg. Here his mind, no longer cramped by unnatu- 
ral circumstances, resumed its expansive power ; and his 
learning and eloquence soon gained him friends among 
the powerful and distinguished. A mission to Rome 
gave him but too many proofs of the profligacy and hy- 
pocrisy then prevailing in the church, and he expressed 
his opinion without respect of persons. By degrees he 
became engaged in an angry controversy. The Pope 
tried to overawe him ; but Luther had a spirit that would 
not bend, and could not be broken. Some of the Ger- 
man princes, and a large body of the people, tired of papal 
oppression, sincerely wished well to Luther and his cause. 
Emboldened by safety and success, he went on attacking 
one after another, the strong holds of Catholic power. 
The Pope issued decrees forbidding all people to read his 
writings, and threatening him with excommunication, and 
the sentence of outlawry, (by which any one who met 
him had a right to kill him,) if he did not recant what he 
had written. The Emperor Charles the Fifth being called 
upon to put his threat in execution, summoned Luther to 
appear before a Diet at Worms. His friends earnestly 
entreated him not to go, believing he would not return 
alive ; but the undaunted reformer replied, " I will go, if 
there be as many devils at Worms as there are tiles on 
the roofs of the houses." 

He maintained his cause with firmness and eloquence ; 
concluding by saying, " I neither can nor will recant, 
because it is not safe, or advisable, to do anything which 
is against my own conscience. Here I stand, I cannot do 
otherwise, so help me God ! Amen." 



132 GOOD WIVES. 

Many of his enemies tried to persuade Charles the 
Fifth to break the promise he had given, that Luther 
should be safety conveyed home ; telling him he was 
under no obligation to keep his word to a heretic ; but to 
this the Emperor replied, " What is promised must be 
performed. And even if the whole world should lie, 
princes ought to adhere to the truth." 

Luther accordingly departed from Worms under the pro- 
tection of a strong escort, after having received the most flat- 
tering attentions from several princes, and persons of dis- 
tinction. A singular circumstance occurred while he was 
dining with the Elector of Treves ; just as he was raising 
a glass of wine to his lips, the glass suddenly shivered 
into atoms. It was a prevalent opinion among the guests 
that some kind of strong poison had been infused into the 
wine. 

On his way home he was attacked by a couple of 
knights, taken prisoner, and conveyed to the Castle of 
Wartburg. This proved, however, to be the friendly 
interference of the Elector of Saxony, who wished to 
secrete him for a time from the active hatred of the 
Catholics. At the Castle, he was known only by the 
name of Sir George ; and elsewhere it was generally be- 
lieved he had been killed, or taken prisoner by his ene- 
mies. Here he began his translation of the New Testa- 
ment ; and by his exertions the Bible was distributed 
among a mass of benighted people, to whom it had been 
expressly forbidden by the priests. 

It was the policy of the ignorant and insidious monks 
of that day to keep the people in darkness ; one of them 
says, " I observe in the hands of many persons a bo k 
which they call the New Testament. It is a book full of 
daggers and poison. As to the Hebrew, my dear breth- 



MME. LUTHER 133 

ren, it is certain that whoever learns it becomes imme- 
diately a Jew." 

Such teachers of course had a most unbounded dislike 
to the man who had both the will and the courage to 
spread light among the people ; and it is no wonder that 
numerous attempts were made to assassinate him. In 
this perilous situation his life could not have been saved, 
had not God so disposed the hearts of princes, that they 
wished to preserve him as a salutary check against the 
tyranny of the pope. 

In one form the power of the church was severely felt, 
by innumerable victims of both sexes. The revenues 
of the church, and the strength of its influence, were pro- 
digiously increased by monastic institutions; hence it 
became a matter of policy to decoy young persons into 
toils from which they could never escape. All the awful, 
and all the seductive power of the Catholic religion was 
used to effect this purpose. The young girl, just emerg- 
ing from childhood, was taught that there was something 
holy and beautiful in being the bride of Heaven. The 
ceremony of taking the veil was invested with all the 
pomp and gayety of a wedding ; the brain of the young 
victim was made giddy with her own momentary import- 
ance, and the splendid preparations for her spiritual nup- 
tials ; music lent its powerful aid to a species of mental 
intoxication, in which human vanity was strangely blend- 
ed with feelings more holy and mysterious ; and in this 
delirium of fancy and of feeling, the simple maiden took 
the solemn vow, which forever separated her from all the 
best and purest hopes of the human heart. It was indeed 
possible to return to the world after the veil of probation- 
ship had been fastened on the innocent head by a wreath 
of flowers ; but public opinion branded such a step as 
8* 



134 GOOD WIVES, 

capricious and impious, and the priests declared that it 
drew down the vengeance of an offended God. How 
could a timid girl be expected to brave at once the terrors 
of earth and Heaven ? With few exceptions they linger- 
ed on — and took the perpetual vow — and learned too late 
that the human heart must have human affections. Some 
were no doubt comparatively happy ; but by far the 
greater part passed their existence in a perpetual strug- 
gle between the natural yearnings of the heart, and the 
unnatural duties imposed upon them by their religion. 
And to these deluded victims were added many unwilling 
ones, forced into monastic seclusion by ambitious parents, 
who were desirous to concentrate their wealth and honours 
upon one favoured child. 

The spirit of light and liberty diffused by Luther, found 
its way even into the dark recesses of the cloister. It 
became no uncommon thing for monks to quit their pro- 
fession ; and at last woman's feebler nature arose and 
shook off the yoke that had broken many a pure and lov- 
ing heart. In 1523, nine nuns escaped from the Convent 
of Nimptschen, near Grimma. This event of course pro- 
duced a great excitement ; even the princes who were 
favourable to the reformed religion did not dare to protect 
the fugitives openly. 

But Luther, as usual, scorned to proceed with caution. 
He wrote and spoke boldly in defence of the nuns, and 
praised those who had assisted them to escape. He even 
went so far as to throw off the monastic habit, which he 
had continued to wear until that time. Among the nuns 
was Catherine de Bora, a handsome woman, of highly 
respectable family, who became the object of a very strong 
and enduring attachment on the part of Luther. Some 
lingering prejudices concerning the propriety of marriage 



MME. LUTHER. 135 

between a monk and nun induced him to repress his 
f»e!ings for a time. But finding nothing in Scripture to 
support his scruples, and being strongly urged to it by his 
revered parents, he suddenly resolved to marry. He was 
united to Catherine de Bora in 1525 ; the bridegroom was 
forty-two years old, and the bride twenty-six. Considering 
the state of public opinion at that period, the power and 
rage of his enemies, and his own want of fortune, it was 
certainly a very bold step ; but it was one which he never 
repented. The advocates of the Romish church took 
this occasion to pour forth a fresh torrent of abuse. Some 
affirmed that he was insane ; others that he was possess- 
ed by an evil spirit; and many loaded both him and his 
wife with epithets which it would pollute these pages to 
quote. The storm raged with such fury, that even the 
courageous Luther was a little disheartened at first. He 
says, " My marriage has made me so despicable, that I 
hope my humiliation will rejoice the angels and vex the 
devils." 

But a man conscious of thoroughly upright motives 
cannot long be put out of countenance by the injustice of 
public opinion. Catherine proved a helpmate indeed ; 
and in her faithful love, he found perpetual consolation. 
Her unremitting tenderness during his frequent attacks 
of illness, called forth his warmest gratitude ; and when 
he spoke of her to his friends, her name was always 
coupled with the most affectionate expressions. 

In a temperament like his, disease naturally induced 
occasional gloom and petulance, which she bore with the 
most unvarying good temper ; always exerting her influ- 
ence to soothe and enliven him. By these means she 
obtained such hold upon his affections, that he was wont 
to compare his greatest temporal blessings with her. His 



136 GOOD WIVES. 

favourite production was his Commentary on Galatians : 
and he showed his preference by always calling it " his 
Catherine de Bora." 

He was apt to linger long in the company of his wife 
and children, and never denied himself this gratification 
except when he was engaged in finishing some great 
work. Once, he locked himself up in his study and re- 
mained three days and three nights without any other 
nourishment than bread and water. For sometime his 
wife refrained from disturbing him ; but finding her re- 
peated calls at the door unanswered, she became very 
much alarmed, and at last persuaded some persons to 
break into the room. Luther was at his writing-desk 
entirely absorbed in meditation when they entered. At 
first he was displeased at the intrusion, and said to her, 
" Do you not know that I must work while it is day, for 
the night cometh wherein no one can work ?" But his 
heart was soon touched, when she told him how much 
anxiety he had caused her. Like most courageous and 
enthusiastic men, Luther had a heart as docile and affec- 
tionate as a little child. He could never see his wife or 
children suffer, without shedding tears ; and once, when 
he was spectator of a chase, he tried to save the life, of a 
poor little trembling hare, by wrapping it in his cloak : 
the dogs, however, discovered it, and killed it. 

His disposition was frank and social, and his conversa- 
tion was alike distinguished for learning and playfulness. 
He was no friend to large parties. He once said, " I 
waste a great deal of time by going to entertainments. 
I do not know what devil has given rise to this custom. 
I cannot well refuse to go to them, but at the same time 
it is a great disadvantage to me." 

He had nevertheles a keen relish for social intercourse, 



MME. LUTHER. 137 

and his friends delighted to see him in his own domestic 
circle. His affectionate deportment as a husband and 
father mingled beautifully with his religious exercises, 
and threw something of sunshine about his home. 

He was exceedingly fond of music, and insisted that 
it had great power in producing pious and elevated 
thoughts ; in his hours of dejection nothing soothed him 
so effectually. In the evening he always sang a hymn 
before he parted from his family and friends.^ 

Gardening was likewise a favourite amusement with 
him. Writing to a friend to procure him some seeds, he 
says, " While Satan rages, I will laugh at him, and en- 
joy my Creator in the garden." 

He and his student Wolfgang, once busied themselves 
in learning the turner's trade. " My reasons," said he, 
" are that if it should so happen, that the world would 
not support us, for the sake of the Word of God, we 
might be able to earn our bread by the labour of our 
hands." 

External honours were of little value in Luther's esti- 
mation. He reproved popes and princes as freely as if 
they had been common men ; and his manner toward 
his inferiors was always meek and affable. A coachman, 
who had carried certain persons to Wittemberg, had a 
strong desire to see " the true pope" as Luther was then 
generally called by the people. 

Having asked leave, he was readily introduced into 
the house, and, in a respectful and bashful manner, took 
his station by the door. Luther, perceiving his shyness, 
went up to him, shook his hand very cordially, invited 
him to the table, drank to his health, and handed him his 

* It is generally supposed that Luther composed the popular 
tune called Old Hundred. 



138 GOOD WIVES. 

own glass, which in those days was considered a peculiar 
honour. The man was delighted, and boasted every- 
where that he had sat at the same table with Doctor Mar- 
tin Luther. 

Luther deemed it a duty to be with his children a 
good deal. He used to say, " We must often prattle with 
children, and thus come to their assistance in whatever is 
good.' 1 He was a fond but very strict father. Once 
when his son had committed a fault, he would neither 
see, nor hear of him, for three days ; yet this was his 
favourite child, whom he always called " his Johnny." — 
" I," said Luther, " would fain see one that could make 
these two agree together, to be joyful, and to be afraid. 
I cannot behave myself in that manner toward God ; but 
my little son, John, can show himself so toward me ; for 
when I sit in my study, and write or do something else, 
then my boy sings me a song ; and when he will be too 
loud, then I check him a little ; yet nevertheless, he sing- 
eth on, but with a more mild and softer tone, and some- 
what with fear and reverence. Even so will God like- 
wise have us to do ; that we should always rejoice in 
Him, yet with fear and reverence." 

Luther had no taste for luxury and parade ; his manner 
of living was simple in the extreme. When advised to 
lay up something for his children, he replied, " That will 
I not do ; for else will they not rely on God and their 
hands, but on their gold." 

In all respects Luther's wishes were a law to his wife ; 
and he, on his part, seems to have mingled no small de- 
gree of respect with his affection for her. We are not 
informed whether she was a woman of strong intellect ; 
but it is to be supposed that she was sensible, as well as 
affectionate, else such a man as Luther would not have 



M M £ . LUTHER. 139 

delisjhted so much in her company. A learned English 
gentleman, who often dined with them, spoke German 
imperfectly. " I will give you my wife for a schoolmis- 
tress," said the reformer ; " she shall teach you to speak 
Dutch purely and readily; for she is very eloquent, and 
so perfect therein, that she far surpasseth me." 

In a letter to Stifelius, he says, " My rib, Kate, salutes 
you, and thanks you for the favour of your kind letter. 
She is very well, through God's mercy; and is obedient 
and complying with me in all things, and more agreea- 
ble, I thank God, than I could have expected ; so that I 
would not change my poverty for the wealth of Croesus." 

He often said he would not exchange his wife for the 
kingdom of France, or the riches of Venice ; and that 
for three good reasons. 1. Because she was given him 
at the time when he implored the assistance of God in 
finding a good wife ; 2. Because, though she was not 
faultless, she had fewer faults than any other woman ; 
3. Because she had been very faithful in her affection to 
him. 

Luther's constitution was enfeebled by frequent illness 
and severe pain. In January, 1546, he thus addresses 
a friend. " I write to you though old, decrepit, inactive, 
languid, and now possessed of only one eye. When 
drawing to the brink of the grave, I had hopes of obtain- 
ing a reasonable share of rest ; but I continue to be over- 
powered with writing, preaching, and business, in the same 
manner as if I had not discharged my part in these duties 
in the early period of life." 

Yet six days after writing this, he had energy enough 
to undertake a journey to Eisleben, his native place, in 
order to decide a dispute concerning the brass and silver 
mines in that place. He was accompanied by his three 



140 GOOD WIVES 

sons, and the Counts of Mansfield came with a hundred 
horsemen to meet him. 

This journey was his last. He died at Eisleben after 
a brief illness. In his will he spoke of his wife with 
great tenderness ; praising her integrity, modesty and 
fidelity — and testifying that she had truly loved him, and 
faithfully served him. To her he left what little property 
he possessed. His body was carried to Wittemberg, and an 
oration pronounced by his dearly beloved friend, Melanc- 
thon. The funeral was conducted with pomp better suited 
to his great reputation than to his own simple habits 
while living. Princes, nobles, professors, students, and 
an immense concourse of people followed him to the 
grave. 

The year after his death, when the troops of Charles 
the Fifth quartered in Wittemberg, a soldier gave Lu- 
ther's effigy two stabs with his dagger ; and the Spaniards 
were very desirous of having the monument of the here- 
tic demolished, and his bones burned. The emperor 
nobly replied, " Luther is now subject to another Judge, 
whose jurisdiction it is not for me to usurp. I war not 
with the dead." 

The widow survived nearly seven years, and died at 
Torgau in 1552. 

His children, consisting of three sons and a daughter, 
were saved from poverty by the generosity of the Elector 
of Saxony and the Counts of Mansfield. 



MADAME OBERLIN, 

WIFE OF JOHN FREDERIC OBERLIN. 

John Frederic Oberlin was the pastor of Walbach, 
an obscure village in the north-eastern part of France, 
situated in the Ban de la Roche, or Steintahl, which sig- 
nifies the Valley of Stones. From his childhood to the day 
of his death, he was remarkable for his disinterestedness. 
He lived only to do good. He refused more eligible 
situations, for the sake of leading an humble and laborious 
life in the Ban de la Roche, simply because the people 
were very poor and very ignorant, and he could nowhere 
else be so useful. 

Here he made himself the companion and friend of 
the peasantry ; he not only taught them the way of sal- 
vation, but instructed their children-; introduced the 
sciences and mechanical arts among them ; projected 
roads over places hitherto deemed impassable ; and him- 
self sallied forth with a pick-axe on his shoulder, to assist 
in making them. Under his instruction the people be- 
came at once pious and enlightened. They all called 
him father, and he regarded them as his family. He 
lived among them in such a state of patriarchal purity, 
simplicity, and affection, that we almost wonder angels 
did not visit him, as they did Abraham of old. Little 
will here be said of the wonderful exertions, and animated 
piety of this excellent man, because his memoirs have 
lately been republished by the Rev. Henry Ware, Jr. 



142 GOOD WIVES. 

It is a book of blessed influence ; making one feel as if 
a spirit like a dove had folded its soft wings over the 
heart. 

The circumstances of his wedded life are peculiarly 
appropriate to this volume. Before he settled in the Ban 
de la Roche, his mother was very anxious that he should 
find a companion, to cheer his loneliness and relieve him 
from domestic cares. His own feelings were not par- 
ticularly interested on the subject ; but in order to please 
his mother, he was willing to marry the daughter of a 
rich widow, whom she recommended. 

But in all the concerns of life, it was his practice to 
wait for some intimation from Divine Providence. In 
this instance, he earnestly prayed that God would direct 
his judgment. If the mother of the young lady first 
made the proposition to him,^ he resolved to consider it 
a sign that the marriage ought to take place. He visited 
the house, and received a courteous reception ; but the 
conversation was -entirely confined to topics of ordinary 
interest. He considered this as an indication of Provi- 
dence, and went no more. 

His parents afterward proposed another connexion, 
which they thought would be conducive to his happiness. 
He had esteemed the young lady for a long time, and 
had a great friendship, for her father ; but his affections 
appear to have been in a very passive state. The parents 
drew up a marriage contract, to which the younger par- 
ties assented. But a more wealthy suitor was preferred, 
and Oberlin relinquished his claims. In a few weeks 
the young lady's father wrote him a letter, asking to have 

* We must recollect that it is common in France for parents to 
manage matrimonial contracts. 



MME. OBERLIN. 143 

the connexion renewed. Obcrlin replied that his friend- 
ship was unabated, but he considered the circumstances 
which had occurred, a direct intimation from Providence 
that the marriage would not be for the good, either of 
himself, or the lady. 

A warm friendship continued to exist between the 
families, but the union was no more thought of. 

The younger sister of Oberlin accompanied him to 
Waldbach, and took charge of his domestic concerns. 
When he had resided there about a year, a relative from 
Strasbourg, (their native place,) named Madeleine Sa- 
lome Witter, came to visit Sophia Oberlin. She was a 
woman of religious principle, and her mind was highly 
cultivated ; but her habits were at that time more expen- 
sive, and she cared more about the world, than did her 
meek and simple cousin Frederic ; nevertheless, he be- 
came convinced that she was made for him. Two days 
before her intended departure, a voice seemed to whisper 
distinctly, " Take her for thy partner ! " " It is impossi- 
ble," thought he ; " our dispositions do not agree. Still 
the secret voice whispered, " Take her for thy partner ! " 
He slept little that night ; and in his morning prayer, he 
earnestly entreated God to give him a sign whether this 
event was in accordance with the Divine will ; solemnly 
declaring that if Madeleine acceded to the proposition 
with great readiness, he should consider the voice he 
had heard as a leading of Providence. 

He found his cousin in the garden, and immediately 
began the conversation by saying, " You are about to 
leave us, my dear friend. I have received an intimation 
that you are destined to be the partner of my life. Be- 
fore you go, will you give me your candid opinion 
whether you can resolve upon this step?" 



144 GOOD WIVES. 

With blushing frankness, Madeleine placed her hand 
within his ; and then he knew that she would be his 
wife. 

They were married on the sixth of July, 1768. Miss 
Witter had always resolved not to marry a clergyman ; 
but she was devotedly attached to her excellent husband, 
and cordially assisted in all his plans. No dissatisfaction 
at her humble lot, no complaints of the arduous duties 
belonging to their peculiar situation, marred their mutual 
happiness. They were far removed from the vain ex- 
citements, and tinsel splendour of the world ; they were 
surrounded by the rude, illiterate peasantry ; and every 
step in improvement was contested by ignorance and pre- 
judice ; but they were near each other, and both were 
near to God. 

The following prayer, written soon after their union, 
shows what spirit pervaded their peaceful dwelling. 

Prayer of Oberlin and his Wife, for the Blessing and 

Grace of God. 

* Holy Spirit ! descend into our hearts ; assist us to 
pray with fervour from our inmost souls. Permit thy 
children, oh, gracious Father, to present themselves be- 
fore thee, in order to ask of thee what is necessary for 
them. May we love each other only in thee, and in our 
Saviour Jesus Christ, as being members of his body. 
Enable us at all times to look solely to thee, to walk be- 
fore thee, and to be united together in thee ; that thus 
we may grow daily, in the spiritual life. 

" Grant that we may be faithful in the exercise of our 
duties, that we may stimulate each other therein, warn- 
ing each other of our faults, and seeking together for 
pardon in the blood of Jesus Christ. When we pray 



MME. OBERLIN. 145 

together, (and may we pray much and frequently) be 
thou, O Lord Jesus, with us ; kindle our fervour, O Hea- 
venly Father, and grant us, for the sake of Jesus Christ, 
whatever thy Holy Spirit shall teach us to ask. 

" Seeing that in this life, thou hast placed the mem- 
bers of our household under our authority, give us wis- 
dom and strength to guide them in a manner conformable 
to thy will. May we always set them a good example, 
following that of Abraham, who commanded his children 
and his household after him, to keep the way of the 
Lord, in doing what is right. If thou givest us children, 
and preservest them to us, grant us grace to bring them 
up to thy service, to teach them early to know, to fear, 
and to love thee, and to pray to that God who has made 
a covenant with them, that, conformably to the engage- 
ment which will be undertaken for them at their baptism, 
they may remain faithful from the cradle to the grave. 
O Heavenly Father, may we inculcate thy word, accord- 
ing to thy will, all our lives, with gentleness, love and 
patience, both at their rising up and lying down, at home 
and abroad, and under all circumstances ; and do thou 
render it meet for the children to whom thou hast given 
life only as a means of coming to thee. 

" And when we go together to the Holy Supper, O 
ever give us renewed grace, renewed strength, and re- 
newed courage, for continuing to walk in the path to 
heaven ; and, as we can only approach thy table four 
times in the year, grant that in faith we may much more 
frequently be there, yes, every day and every hour ; that 
we may always keep death in view, and always be pre- 
pared for it; and if we may be permitted to solicit it of 
thee, O grant that we may not long be separated from 
9 



146 GOOD WIVES. 

each other, but that the death of the one may be speedily, 
and very speedily, followed by that of the other. 

" Hear, O gracious Father, in the name of Jesus 
Christ, thy well-beloved son. And, merciful Redeem- 
er, may we both love thee with ardent devotion, always 
walking and holding communion with thee, not placing 
our confidence in our own righteousness and in our own 
works, but only in thy blood and in thy merits. Be with 
us; preserve us faithful; and grant, Lord Jesus, that 
we may soon see thee. Holy Spirit, dwell always in 
our hearts : teach us to lift our thoughts continually to 
our gracious Father ; impart to us thy strength, or thy 
consolation, as our wants may be. And to thee, to the 
Father, and to the Son, be praise, honour, and glory, for 
ever and ever. Amen." 

For sixteen years Mrs. Oberlin was a beloved friend 
and useful assistant to her husband. In their tastes and 
pursuits, in their opinions and feelings, they became en- 
tirely one. She managed his household discreetly, edu- 
cated their children judiciously, and. entered into all his 
benevolent plans with earnestness and prudence. 

She died suddenly, in January, 1784, a few weeks af- 
ter the birth of her last child. Her death was deeply felt 
in the Ban de la Roche, for her assistance and sympathy 
had always been freely offered to the poor and the afflicted. 

The bereaved husband was at first almost stunned by 
the blow. But God supported him in this hour of trial. 
No duties were neglected, no murmur escaped his lips. 
In a document written about that time, he says, " I have 
all my life had a desire, occasionally a very strong one, 
to die, owing in some degree to my moral infirmities and 
my frequent derelictions. My affection for my wife and 



M ME. OBERLIN. 147 

children, and my attachment to my parish, have some- 
tanw checked this desire, though for short intervals only.' 
W ben Ins beloved partner had gone to another world, 
;"' more eawes ly wished to depart and be with her; but 
'" prayed for resignation to the will of Him, who alone 
knew what was best; and resignation and peace were 
given hnn. He might be said never to have been sepa- 
rated Irom his wife ; for he seemed to live m her memory, 
and devoted several hours every day to communion with 
her. 

His pathetic prayer that the death of one might be very 
speedily followed by that of the other was not granted 
He survived Madeleine forty-two years ; and continued 
to the last a blessing to his parishioners, and to all who 
came within his influence. 

The wonderful improvements he had made in the 
Steintahl, and the religious and enlightened state of his 
little community, excited universal interest and admira- 
tion The goodness of Oberlin became fame ; and in the 
decline of life the excellent old man was visited by for- 
eigners from various parts of the world, who came to pay 
their tribute of respect to the venerable pastor of the Ban 
de la Roche. 

He died in June, 1826, at the age of 86. At the mo- 
ment of his departure the tolling of a bell announced to 
his anxious people that their « Father Oberlin," as they 
affectionately called him, had « gone hence, to be with 
them no more." Their sorrow was deep and universal. 
Notwithstanding the incessant rain that poured down for 
several days previous to his funeral, all the inhabitants, 
young and old, from the remotest corners of the Ban de 
la Roche, assembled to pay their last tribute of respect to 
their instructor, benefactor and friend. His bible and 



148 GOOD WIVES. 

clerical robes were laid upon his coffin, and the mayor 
affixed to the funeral-pall the decoration of the Legion of 
Honour. Twelve girls standing around the hearse, sang 
a hymn in chorus. The coffin was borne by the magis- 
trates, and the children of the different schools established 
by Oberlin chanted, at intervals, sacred hymns prepared 
for the occasion. The procession was more than two 
miles in length. In front walked the oldest inhabitant of 
the Steintahl, carrying a cross to be placed upon his 
grave, on which was engraved in open letters, the simple 
and affecting epitaph, Papa Oberlin. 

Many Roman Catholic priests, and poor Catholic 
women were present, and were deeply affected. For 
though Oberlin was a Lutheran, he was very tolerant of 
the opinions of others, and wished all to enjoy the utmost 
freedom in their faith. He carried this kind feeling so 
far, that he administered the sacrament to Christians of 
all sects, and had three different kinds of sacramental 
bread prepared, that the consciences of neither Catholic, 
Lutheran, or Calvinist, might be offended. 

Oberlin was the intimate friend of Lavater, who was 
even more beloved as a Christian minister than celebrated 
as a physiognomist. 

Oberlin had nine children ; seven of whom were liv- 
ing when his wife died; and five survived him. His 
daughters all married clergymen, and every union was 
blessed with the good old patriarch's cordial approbation. 



MADAME GROTIUS, 

WIFE OF HUGO GROTIUS. 

Hugo Grotius, one of the most renowned scholars of 
his age, was very early in life distinguished for his "real 
attainments. He was born in Delft, in 1583. At eWt 
years of age he composed Latin elegiac verses; and" at 
fourteen, he maintained public theses in mathematics, law, 
and philosophy. In 1598 he accompanied the Ambassador 
of the States to Paris, where he was received with great 
distinction by Henry the Fourth, who gave him his pic- 
ture and a gold chain. With the pardonable vanity of 
youth, Grotius had his own likeness engraved with this 
chain about his neck. In 1599, when he was not yet 
seventeen years old, this extraordinary man pleaded his 
first cause at the bar, in a manner that gave him prodi- 
gious reputation ; and the successive publication of several 
learned works secured the universal admiration of men 
of learning. 

In 1608, he married Mary Reigersberg, whose father 
had been burgomaster of Veer. The wife was worthy 
of the husband, and her value was duly appreciated. 
Ihrough many changes of fortune, they lived together in 
the utmost harmony and confidence. 

Grotius was an Arminian, and a republican ; and as a 
public man, it was scarcely possible for him to avoid 
being involved in the furious religious and political dis- 
putes of the day. 
9* 



150 GOOD WIVES. 

He was arrested with some others, upon the charge of 
encouraging the city of Utrecht to rebellion, and confined 
in the Castle of the Hague. Previous to his trial, he 
was dangerously ill, during which time his anxious wife 
could not obtain access to him. After very vigorous and 
unfair proceedings, his estates were confiscated, and he 
was sentenced to imprisonment for life. The place of his 
confinement was the fortress of Louvestein, in South 
Holland. His wife earnestly entreated to be his fellow 
prisoner, and her petition was granted. In one of his 
Latin poems he speaks of her with deep feeling, and com- 
pares her presence to a sun-beam amid the gloom of his 
prison. The States offered to do something for his sup- 
port ; but, with becoming pride, she answered that she 
could maintain him out of her own fortune. She in- 
dulged in no useless regrets, but employed all her ener- 
gies to make him happy. Literature added its powerful 
charm to these domestic consolations; and he who has a 
good wife, and is surrounded by good books, may defy 
the world. Accordingly, we find Grotius pursuing his 
studies with cheerful contentment, in the fortress where 
he was condemned to remain during life. But his faith- 
ful wife was resolved to procure his freedom. Those, 
who trusted her with him, must have had small know- 
ledge of the ingenuity and activity of woman's affection. 
Her mind never for a moment lost sight of this favourite 
project, and every circumstance that might favour it, was 
watched with intense interest. 

Grotius had been permitted to borrow books of his 
friends in a neighbouring town, and when they had been 
perused, they were sent back in a chest, which conveyed 
his clothes to the washerwoman. At first, his guards 
had been very particular to search the chest : but never 



MME. GROTIUS. 151 

finding- anything to excite suspicion, they grew careless. 
Upon this negligence, Mrs. Grotius founded hopes of 
havi.no- her husfenfd conveyed away in the chest. Holes 
weft bored in it to admit the air, and she persuaded him 
to try how long he could remain in such a cramped and 
confined situation. The commandant of the fortress was 
absent, when she took occasion to inform his wife that 
she wished to send away a large load of books, because 
the prisoner was destroying tiia health by too much study. 
At the nppointed time, Grotius entered the chest, and 
was with difficulty carried down a ladder by two soldiers. 
Finding it very heavy, one of them said, jestingly, 
' There must be an Arminian in it." She answered 
very coolly that there were indeed some Arminian books 
in it. The soldier thought proper ,to inform the com- 
mandant's wife of the extraordinary weight of the chest ; 
but she replied that it was filled with a load of books' 
which Mrs. Grotius had asked her permission to send 
away, on account of the health of her husband. 

A maid, who was in the secret, accompanied the chest 
to the house of one of her master's friends. Grotius 
came out uninjured ; and dressed like a mason, with 
trowel m hand, he proceeded through the market-place to 
a boat, which conveyed him to Brabant, whence he took 
a carriage to Antwerp. This fortunate escape was 
effected March 22d, 1621. His courageous partner man- 
aged to keep up a belief that he was very ill in his bed, 
until she was convinced that he was entirely beyond the 
power of his enemies. 

When she acknowledged what she had done, the com- 
mandant was in a furious passion. He detained her in 
close custody, and treated her very rigorously, until a 
petition, which she addressed to the States-general, pro- 



152 GOOD WIVES. 

cured her liberation. Some dastardly spirits voted for 
her perpetual imprisonment ; but the better feelings of 
human nature prevailed, and the wife was universally 
applauded for her ingenuity, fortitude, and constant affec- 
tion. 

Grotius found an asylum in France, where he was 
reunited to his family. A residence in Paris is expen- 
sive ; and for some time he struggled with pecuniary em- 
barrassment. The king of France at last settled a pen- 
sion upon him. He continued to write, and his glory 
spread throughout Europe. 

Cardinal Richelieu wished to engage him wholly in 
the interests of France ; and not being able to obtain an 
abject compliance with all his schemes, he made him feel 
the full bitterness of depe-ndance. 

Thus situated, he was extremely anxious to return to 
his native country ; and in 1627 his wife went into Hol- 
land to consult with his friends on the expediency of such 
a step. 

He was unable to obtain any public permission to 
return ; but relying on a recent change in the govern- 
ment, he, by his wife's advice, boldly appeared at Rotter- 
dam. His enemies were still on the alert ; they could 
not forgive the man who refused to apologize, and whose 
able vindication of himself had thrown disgrace upon 
them. Many private persons interested themselves for 
him ; but the magistrates offered rewards to whoever 
would apprehend him. Such was the treatment this 
illustrious scholar met from a country, which owes one 
of its proudest distinctions to his fame ! 

He left Holland, and resided at Hamburgh two years ; 
at which place he was induced to enter the service of 
Christina, queen of Sweden; who appointed him her 



MME. GROTIUS. 153 

ambassador to the court of France. After a residence of 
ten years, during which he continued to increase his 
reputation as an author, he grew tired of a situation, 
which circumstances rendered difficult and embarrassing. 
At his request, he was recalled. He visited Holland, on 
his way to Sweden, and at last met with distinguished 
honour from his ungrateful country. After delivering 
his papers to Christina, he prepared to return to Lubeck. 
He was driven back by a storm; and, being impatient, 
set out in an open wagon, exposed to wind and rain. 
This imprudence occasioned his death. He was com- 
pelled to stop at Rostock, where he died suddenly, Au- 
gust 28, 1645, in the sixty-third year of his age. His 
beloved wife, and four out of six of his children, survived 
him. 



MRS. HOWARD, 

WIFE OF JOHN HOWARD. 

This great philanthropist was born in Clapton, a large 
village near London, in 1727. He inherited a handsome 
fortune from his father, who was a wealthy upholsterer. 

The most distinguishing trait of his early character was 
overflowing kindness ; and these benevolent feelings, 
guided by a most correct judgment, remained with him 
through life, and made him a blessing to the world. 

It was his favourite maxim that " Our superfluities 
should be given up for the convenience of others ; our 
conveniences should give place to the necessities of others ; 
and even our necessities should give way to the extremi- 
ties of the poor." 

There was a perfect harmony between his theory and 
his actions. His ready and earnest benevolence made 
him an object of idolatry among the poor of his neighbour- 
hood ; and when he was abroad on his great mission of 
humanity, he never forgot to give such orders as were 
necessary to supply their necessities. 

In ten years he travelled more than forty-two thousand 
miles for the sole purpose of relieving distress. He visit- 
ed nearly all the prisons and hospitals of Europe ; endur- 
ed toil and privation ; risked infection ; boldly spoke 
offensive truths to princes, nobles, and men in power ; 
and liberally expended his income, where money could 
be productive of good. His generosity was particularly 



MRS. HOWARD. 156 

exercised toward worthy people imprisoned for small debts. 
On such occasions, he would often return to his family in 
great joy, saying, " I have made a poor woman happy ; I 
have sent her husband home to her and her children." 

This good man was twice married. His first connex- 
ion seems to have been formed entirely from motives of 
gratitude, to a highly respectable widow, who had been 
exceedingly kind to him during a severe illness. He 
was then about twenty-five years old, and his bride had 
numbered rather more than twice as many years. She 
was a sincere, affectionate, and sensible woman, and her 
husband respected and esteemed her. In two or three 
years the connexion was dissolved by her death. 

To her who was truly his wife, he was united in 1758, 
when he was about thirty years old. She was the 
daughter of Edward Leeds, Esq. of Croxton. Early 
accustomed to the indulgences of wealth, she formed no 
frivolous tastes, no expensive habits. Amiable, affection- 
ate, and benevolent, she found her greatest delight in 
doing good. They were both pious. She cordially 
assisted in all his plans, seconded all his wishes, and 
seemed to have adopted the creed of Milton's Eve, a God 
is thy law, thou mine." 

Their residence at Cardington was fitted up in the 
neatest and most unostentatious manner. All the linen 
necessary to furnish the house was spun by the cottagers 
in the neighbourhood, under the immediate superintend- 
ence of Mrs. Howard herself; and during his life he al- 
ways made it an object to use such articles as could be 
manufactured by his poor neighbours. When absent for 
any time, he always left particular directions for the com- 
fort of his aged nurse ; and when he was at home, he 



156 GOOD WIVES. 

would himself see that coals were sent to her cottage, to 
warm her bed, every night when the weather was cold 
enough to require it. In all these things, Mrs. Howard 
warmly sympathized. She attended upon the sick, fed 
the hungry, and clothed the destitute. Soon after her mar- 
riage, she sold her jewels, and put the money into her hus- 
band's charity purse. On settling his accounts one year, 
Mr. Howard found an unexpected balance in his favour ; 
and he asked his wife if she would like to take a trip 
to London. " What a comfortable cottage for a poor per- 
son might be built with the money we should expend !" 
was her benevolent reply. The sum was appropriated 
as she suggested ; and this excellent couple enjoyed the 
purest satisfaction of the human heart — that of preferring 
the good of others to our own. 

The same sympathy prevailed in their religious im- 
pressions. 

Wishing to observe the effect on her mind, Mr. How- 
ard once asked her to accompany him to some place of 
fashionable resort in London. In the midst of the bril- 
liant crowd, she seemed serious and contemplative. " Tell 
me, dear Harriet, what you are thinking about," said he. 

" I am thinking of Mr. 's sermon last Sunday," 

she replied. 

A degree of simple and tasteful elegance pervaded 
their dwelling, and gave indication of that true refinement, 
which usually accompanies purity of heart. 

There was a good deal of rural beauty in the arrange- 
ment of the grounds. In one place, the broad gravel 
walk was thickly shaded by majestic firs, which Mr. 
Howard brought home when he returned from his first 
travels on the continent. One tree, planted by his be- 
loved wife, was the object of his peculiar attachment. 



MRS. HOWARD. 157 

Many n happy hour was spent in this quiet grove, in de- 
rising and talking- over the extensive schemes of benevo- 
lence, which he afterward lived to execute. 

A rustic hermitage, called the Koot House, on account 
of its being- made entirely of the roots and trunks of trees, 
was a favourite place of resort. 

A lamp made out of a root was in the centre, and masses 
of peat served for chairs. A book shelf was fitted into 
a recess in the wall, and the Gothic portico and windows 
admitted light enough for the student. This little library 
betrayed the tastes and feelings of the owner; for here 
might be seen the works of Hervey, Flavel, Baxter, 
Milton, Thomson, Young, and Watts. 

Mr. Howard, though mild and affectionate, was a great 
friend to subordination in families. He thought implicit 
obedience was the duty of wives, as well as children; 
and he would hardly have assented to the omission which 
the liberality of modern clergymen has induced them to 
make in the marriage service ; an omission which, after 
all, " breaks the word of promise to the ear, but keeps it 
to the sense " — for how can a woman love and honour 
her husband without obeying him ? While people love 
and honour each other, it is natural to yield to each 
other's wishes. But if they do not love and honour each 
other, mere obedience is a lifeless observance of the vow. 

Before their union, Mr. Howard wished his lady to 
make a promise that if a discussion arose upon any sub- 
ject, it should always be left to his decision. She cheer- 
fully made the promise ; and what is more to the purpose, 
she always kept it. 

More complete happiness than fell to the lot of this wor- 
thy pair can hardly be imagined to exist on earth — perfect 
sympathy on all subjects, with the power and the will to 



158 GOOD WIVES. 

do good continually. For about seven years Mr. Howard 
enjoyed the company of his beloved partner, and valua- 
ble assistant ; and then death came to interrupt for a time, 
the union which was to be renewed in heaven. Mrs. 
Howard died in March, 1765, soon after the birth of their 
only child. Her husband felt his loss acutely, but he bore 
it like a christian. He never alluded to her without ex- 
pressions of affection and respect amounting to venera- 
tion. He caused a tablet to be erected to her memory in 
Cardington church, bearing the following beautiful in- 
scription : 

In hope of a resurrection to eternal life, 
Through the mercy of God by Jesus Christ, 
Rests the mortal part of 
Henrietta Howard, 
Daughter of Edward Leeds, Esq. 
Of Croxton in Cambridgeshire ; 
Who died the 31st of March, 1765, aged 39. 
She opened her mouth with wisdom, 
And in her tongue was the law of kindness. 

Proverbs, xxxi. 26. 

The education of his little son was the greatest conso- 
lation of the lonely widower. Hiding, walking, or gar- 
dening, the child was with him almost as constantly as 
his shadow. At church, the father was regularly seen 
with his arms round the boy's waist, while the little hands 
rested on his shoulder, or fondled his face, in infant fami- 
liarity. 

Several years after the death of his wife, Mr. Howard 
pointed to a tree among the grove of firs, and said to his 
son, with earnest solemnity, " Jack, I charge you, as you 
value my blessing, never allow that tree to be removed. 
It was planted by your mother." 



MRS. HOWARD. 159 

Feeling that his own care, however assiduous, could 
not supply the place of maternal solicitude, Mr. Howard 
had engaged a pious and judicious woman to take charge 
of his child ; and after having had sufficient experience 
of her fidelity and discretion, he resolved to go abroad to 
fulfil the benevolent intentions he had so long indulged. 
He had twice before visited the continent, and been a 
close observer of whatever affected the welfare of his fel- 
low creature?. In 1769, he left England for the purpose 
of devoting his time and talents entirely to the cause of 
humanity; and the remainder of his life was principally 
spent in dungeons, lazarettos and other abodes of wretch- 
edness. The exertions he made, and the amount of good 
he effected, are almost incredible. He would not indulge 
himself in visiting the beautiful and magnificent works 
of art, because he could not spare the time from what he 
deemed a more important object ; his dress, though gen- 
tlemanly, was exceedingly plain ; he drank no wine, or 
spirituous liquors of any kind ; and for a great many 
years his diet consisted entirely of such simple food as 
milk, bread, fruit, &c. 

The miniature of his beloved wife w T as the constant 
companion of his travels. His heart was ever with the 
child she had left to his care. His paternal exhortations 
were earnest and frequent ; and he often returned to 
England to observe his progress, and make arrangements 
for his education. Yet this son was doomed to be to him 
a child of sorrow. A wicked, but hypocritical servant, 
initiated him into vice. Dissipation ruined his health, 
and finally made him insane. The news of his irre- 
trievable madness almost broke his father's heart ; but he 
found consolation in the God whom he had always 
served. Writing to his faithful steward, he says, " I fear 



160 



GOOD WIVES 



he gives you, as well as others, a great deal of trouble. 
A great loss to children is their mother ; for they check 
and form the mind, curbing the corrupt passions of 
pride and self-will, which are seen very early in chil- 
dren. I must leave it to Him, with whom are all hearts, 
and sigh in secret ; trusting that the blessing of such an 
excellent mother is laid up for him." 

In this very letter, while this dreadful calamity was so 
recent, the heart-stricken parent does not forget to order 
three pounds sterling to be given to each of the widows 
and invalids among his tenants ; three pounds of deli- 
cious currants, fresh from Zante, to every poor family in 
Cardington ; two guineas to an orphan girl ; and a long 
list of other Christmas presents to the industrious poor. 

Early in 1787, Mr. Howard returned to England, to 
try the effect of his own affectionate attentions upon the 
deranged mind of his son ; and it must have proved a 
bitter trial to his anxious heart, to find that the sight of 
him always increased the delirium. After a series of 
unavailing efforts to restore his reason, he was compelled 
to place him in a lunatic asylum. 

His inspection of the prisons and mad-houses of Eng- 
land was followed by great and immediate improvements, 
and thousands of human beings at the present day owe 
to hjm an amelioration of their miserable lot. 

The benevolent exertions of Mr. Howard excited uni- 
versal respect and admiration ; and a subscription was 
set on foot to erect a statue to his memory. 

This public tribute was painful to his humble and 
modest feelings, and he begged his friends to prevent the 
plan from being carried into execution. " Who, that 
knows the sinfulness of his own heart, could allow him- 
self to receive such an honour ! " said he. He gave direc- 



MRS. HOWARD. 161 

tions that a plain slip of marble placed beneath his wife's 
tablet, should record when and where he died, with the 
simple epitaph, " Christ is my Hope.'' 1 

This apostle of humanity died at Cherson, in Russian 
Tartary, on the 21st of January, 1790, aged 64. He 
desired to be buried without pomp, and without monu- 
mental inscription. His ruling passion was shown in 
death ; for his last orders were that his grave should be 
made useful to his fellow mortals, when he was no longer 
alive to serve them. " Lay me quietly in the earth, 
place a sun-dial over my grave" said he, " and let me be 
forgotten." 

His request, excepting the last clause, was complied 
with ; forgotten he can never be. 

A marble, bearing the record he desired, was placed 
under his wife's tablet at Cardington. 

A statue was afterward erected to his memory in St. 
Paul's Cathedral, London ; and in his gardens at Car- 
dington, Samuel Whitbread, Esq., raised a pedestal, with 
an inscription to commemorate his virtues, and the at- 
tachment of his faithful old gardener. The servants and 
dependants of Howard could never mention their bene- 
factor, or his wife, without tears ; and the most trifling 
articles which had belonged to them, were considered 
precious relics. 

The old gardener was alive in 1812, and took great 
delight in pointing out to visitors the tree planted by Mrs. 
Howard. The identical Bible, in which the great phi- 
lanthropist sought for guidance and consolation during 
the intervals of his travels, still occupied its accustomed 
place in the Root-House. 
10 



MRS. BLACKWELL, 

WIFE OF DOCTOR ALEXANDER BLACKWELL. 

Mrs. Elizabeth Blackwell was the daughter of a 
Scotch merchant. Her husband, Doctor Alexander 
Blackwell, was a native of Aberdeen, and received his 
education at the University of that city. Success in his 
profession was too slow to keep pace with his hopes — 
perhaps with his necessities ; and we rind that he first 
became a corrector of the press in London, afterward a 
printer. 

His new business soon involved him in debt, and he 
was imprisoned. Mrs. Blackwell had a good knowledge 
of botany, and was well skilled in drawing. She re- 
solved to devote these talents to the benefit of her unfor- 
tunate husband, and she fulfilled her task with a remark- 
able degree of talent and energy. Having heard it said 
that an herbal of medicinal plants was much wanted, she 
determined to supply the deficiency. She consulted Sir 
Hans Sloane and several other distinguished physicians ; 
who were so much pleased with her drawings, and had 
so much reverence for the motive, which impelled her to 
exertion, that they gave her every possible facility for 
procuring plants in their freshest state, and spared no 
pains to obtain for her the favour of the public. When 
Mrs. Blackwell had made the drawings, she engraved 
them on copper, and coloured them all with her own 
hands. Each plate was accompanied by a brief descrip- 
tion of the plant, its name in Latin, English, and various 



MRS. BLACK WELL. 163 

other languages, its qualities and uses. These illustra- 
tions were written by Doctor Black well. 

The first volume was published in 1737, and the se- 
cond appeared in 1739. The complete work bore the 
following title : « A curious Herbal, containing five 
hundred of the most useful plants which are now used in 
the practice of physic, engraved on folio copperplates, after 
drawings taken from the life. To which is added a short 
description of the plants, and their common uses in Physic" 

While Mrs. Blackwell was completing this laborious 
undertaking, she resided at Chelsea, near the Garden of 
Medicinal Plants ; where she was frequently visited, and 
much patronized, by people of distinguished rank and 
learning. The College of Physicians gave the book a 
public testimonial of their approbation, and made the au- 
thor a present. Dr. Pulteney, speaking of this work, 
says, " For the most complete set of drawings of medi- 
cinal plants, we are indebted to the genius and industry 
of a lady, exerted on an occasion that redounded highly 
to her praise." 

Mrs. Blackwell effected the purpose for which all this 
labour was performed ; her husband regained his liberty, 
and was, for a time, relieved from pecuniary embarrass- 
ment. But this ill-fated man seemed predestined to be 
unfortunate in all things, save his affectionate and excel- 
lent wife. He formed various schemes, in all of which 
he was successively disappointed. 

He finally went to Sweden, where he drained marshes, 
projected agricultural improvements, and was sometimes 
employed as physician to the king. In this country he 
fell under the suspicion of being concerned in plots 
against the government ; and although he protested his 
innocence to the very last moment, he perished on the 
scaffold in 1747. 



GERTRUDE VONDER WART, 

WIFE OF BARON VONDER WART. 

In the fourteenth century, the Baron Vonder Wart 
was accused, by John of Swabia, of being an accomplice 
in the murder of the Emperor Albert. There is every 
reason to believe that the unhappy man took no part in 
the assassination. He was, however, bound to the tor- 
turing wheel, where his sufferings ended only with his 
life. The devotion of his wife, during these heart-rend- 
ing hours, is described by herself, in a letter to her friend 
Margaretha Freianstien ; it was inserted in a book pub- 
lished at Harlem, in 1818, under the title of " Gertrude 
Vonder Wart, or Fidelity till Death. A true History of 
the Fourteenth Century." 

" I prayed under the scaffold, on which my husband 
was fastened alive upon the wheel, and exhorted him to 
fortitude. I then arose, and with thick pieces of wood 
built myself a kind of steps, by means of which I could 
mount up to the wheel, laid myself upon his trembling 
limbs and head, and stroked the hair from his face, which 
the wind had blown over it. — ' I beseech you, leave me ! 
Oh, I beseech you ! ' he exclaimed continually. ' When 
day breaks, if you should be found here, what will be 
your fate ? and what new misery will you bring upon 
me ? Oh, God ! is it possible that thou canst still in- 
crease my sufferings. ' 

" ' I will die with you ; 'tis for that I come, and no 



GERTRUDE VONDER WART. 165 

power shall force me from you,' said I ; and I spread my 
arms over him, and implored God for my Rudolph's 
death. 

" The day broke slowly, when I saw many people in 
motion opposite us ; I replaced the thick pieces of wood 
where I had found them. It was the guard, who had 
fled on my appearance, but had remained near the spot, 
and, as it seemed, caused a report to be made of what 
had passed ; for at day-break all the people, men, women, 
and children, came flocking out of the town. 

11 Among these people, I recognized the gaoler, who 
had given me up the preceding evening to Von Landen- 
berg. The report must also have reached him, that I 
had been with my husband ; for he approached me, 
shaking his head, and said : ' Woman ! this was not the 
intention when Landenberg fetched you yesterday ! ' 

" As more people approached, I saw also several wo- 
men of my acquaintance ; among them was the wife of 
the bailiff Hugo Von Winterthur : I saluted her, and 
begged her intervention with her husband, that he might 
order the executioner to put an end to my husband's cruel 
sufferings. 

" ' He dare not do anything for me,' sighed Wart, upon 
the wheel, again moving his head at this moment, and 
looking down upon me with his swollen eyes — ' He dare 
not do anything : the Queen pronounced the sentence ; 
and the bailiff must therefore obey : otherwise I had 
well deserved of him that he should do me this last 
kindness.' 

" Some persons brought me bread and confectionary, 
and offered me wine to refresh me ; but I could take 
nothing. The tears that were shed, and the pity that 
animated every heart, and was kindly expressed, was to 



166 GOOD WIVES. 

me the most agreeable refreshment. As it grew lighter, 
the number of people increased ; I recognized also the 
sheriff Steiner Von Pfungen, with his two sons, Conrad 
and Datlikon; also, a Madame Von Neftenbach, who 
was praying for us. 

" The executioner came also ; then Lamprecht, the 
confessor ; the first said with a sigh, ' God have compas- 
sion on this unhappy man, and comfort his soul ! ' the 
latter asked Rudolph if he would not yet confess ? Wart, 
with a dreadful exertion of all. his strength, repeated the 
same words that he had called out to the Queen before 
the tribunal at Brugk. The priest was silent. 

" All at once I heard a cry of * make way ! ' and a 
troop of horsemen approached with their vizors down. 

11 The executioner kneeled, the confessor laid his hand 
upon his breast, the horsemen halted. Fathers and 
mothers held up their children in their arms, and the 
guard with their lances formed a circle, while the tallest 
of the knights raised himself in his stirrups, and said to 
the executioner, * Whither are the crows flown, that he 
still keeps his eyes ? ' and this was the Duke Leopold. 

" My heart ceased to beat, when another knight, with 
a scornful smile, said : ' Let him writhe as long as he 
has feeling ; but these people must be gone. Confounded 
wretches ! this sighing and crying makes me mad ! No 
pity must be shown here ; and she, who so increases the 
howling, who is she ? what does the woman want ? away 
with her ! ' 

" I now recognized the voice of the Queen. It was 
Agnes, in the dress and armour of a knight. I remarked 
immediately that it was a woman's voice, and it is cer- 
tain that it was Agnes. 

" ' It is Wart's wife ! ' I heard a third knight say. 



GERTRUDE VONDER WART. 167 

' Last night, when the sentence was executed, we took 
her with us to Kyburg. She escaped from us ; and 
I must find her here then ! We thought that in her 
despair she had leaped into the moat of the castle. We 
had been seeking her since this morning early. God ! 
what faithful love ! Let her alone ; nothing can be done 
with her.' 

11 I here recognized the mild tempered youth, Von Lan- 
denberg. How well did he now speak for me ! I could 
have fallen at his feet. 

" ' Well, Gertrude ! ' cried a fourth tone, ' will you not 
yet take rational advice? do not kill yourself! save your- 
self for the world ! you will not repent of it.' 

" Who was this, Margaretha? I trembled ; it was she 
who wanted to persuade me at Brugk, to leave the 
criminal Wart to his fate, and pass days of joy with 
her. Then I too could almost have exclaimed, ' God ! 
this is too much ! ' 

" Agnes made a sign to an esquire to raise me up, and 
bring me away from the scaffold. He approached me, 
but I threw my arm round it, and implored my own and 
my husband's death. But in vain ! two men dragged 
me away. I besought assistance from Heaven ; it was 
granted me. 

" Von Landenberg (otherwise a faithful servant of 
Austria), once more ventured to speak for me. ? Cease 
to humble her ; such fidelity is not found on earth : 
angels in Heaven must rejoice at it ; but it would be 
good if the people were driven away.' 

" They let me loose again ; the horsemen departed ; 
tears flowed from Lamprecht's eyes ; he had acted strictly 
according to his duty, and executed the will of the Queen : 
he could now listen to the voice of nature, and weep with 



168 GOOD WIVES. 

me. ' I can hold out no longer, noble lady ! I am van- 
quished ! your name shall be mentioned with glory 
among the saints in heaven, for this world will forget it. 
Be faithful unto death, and receive the crown of life,' 
said he — gave me his hand and departed. 

" Every body now left the place, except the executioner 
and the guard : evening came on, and at length silent 
night ; a stormy wind arose, and its howling joined with 
the loud and unceasing prayers which I put up to the 
Almighty. 

" One of the guard now brought me a cloak to protect 
me against the wind, because it was night ; but I got 
upon the wheel and spread it upon the naked and broken 
limbs of my husband ; the wind whistled through his 
hair, his lips were dry. I fetched him some water in my 
shoe, which was a refreshment to us both. I know not, 
my dearest Margaretha, how it w<as possible for me to 
live through such heart-breaking and cruel hours ! 

" But I lay as if guarded and wonderfully strengthened 
by God's Angels and the Saints, continually praying near 
the wheel on which my whole world reposed. 

" During this time my thoughts were with God. As 
often as a sigh broke from the breast of my Rudolph, it 
was a dagger in my heart. But I remembered the Holy 
Virgin, how she. too had suffered under the cross of her 
Son, and consoled myself with the hope that after a short 
time of suffering, the eternal joys of Heaven would be 
my portion, and this gave me courage to suffer ; I knew, 
too, for whom I suffered, and this gave me strength in 
the combat, so that I endured to the very last moment. 

" Though Wart had at first so earnestly begged of me 
not to increase his agonies by my presence, yet he now 
thanked me as much for not having left him. In my 



GERTRUDE VONDER WART. 169 

prayers to God he found consolation and refreshment; it 
was a comfort to his soul when I prayed. 

" How the last dreadful morning and noon were spent, 
permit me to pass over in silence. — A few hours before 
evening, Rudolph moved his head for the last time ; I 
raised myself up to him. He murmured very faintly, 
but with smiling love upon his lips, these words : ' Ger- 
trude, this is fidelity till death,' and expired. — On my 
knees I thanked God for the grace which he had given 
me to remain faithful to the end." 
10* 



PANTHEA, 

WIFE OF ABRADATAS, KING OF THE SUSIANS. 

When Cyrus the Great conquered the Assyrians, Pan- 
thea was among the captives of his sword. Her husband, 
Abradatas, was gone on an embassy to the King of the 
Bactrians, at the time the camp was taken by the Per- 
sians ; and at this trying moment the poor queen had no 
one to whom she could fly for protection or sympathy. 

Being the most beautiful woman in all Asia, Panthea 
was selected as a suitable present for the conquering 
Cyrus. When the Persian officers visited her tent, the 
gracefulness of her figure immediately attracted attention, 
although she was dressed in the same manner as her ser- 
vants, and covered with a long veil. Perceiving her 
deep dejection, they said to her, "Take courage, woman; 
we have heard that your husband is indeed an excellent 
man ; but we have chosen you for one, who is not inferior 
to him in person, in understanding, or in power ; for if 
there be a man in the world who deserves admiration, it 
is Cyrus ; and to him henceforward you shall belong." 
As soon as the young queen heard this, she burst into a 
passion of grief, and refused all consolation ; for her heart 
was with her husband. 

When Cyrus heard the story, he refused even to see 
her, lest he might be too much fascinated by her rare 
loveliness. 

He ordered his friend, Araspes, to see that she was 



PANTHEA. 171 

attended with the utmost respect, and nothing omitted, 
which could contribute to her happiness. 

Araspes, dazzled by her beauty, and hearing continu- 
ally of her excellence, became very much in love with 
her. For a long time, Panthea refrained from bringing 
any complaint against the friend of Cyrus ; but at last he 
grew so importunate and troublesome, that she was obliged 
to inform the king of his conduct. 

Cyrus, unwilling to treat his friend in an angry man- 
ner, yet anxious to place him out of the way of the charm- 
ing captive, proposed to Araspes to proceed to the enemy's 
camp, as a pretended deserter, but real spy. Araspes, 
who was conscious of deserving severe reproof, readily 
consented. When Panthea heard of his desertion, she 
sent a messenger to Cyrus, saying, " Do not be afflicted 
that Araspes has gone over to the enemy. If you allow 
me to send for my husband, I will engage that he will 
prove a much more faithful friend than Araspes. The 
prince, who now reigns, once attempted to part us from 
each other ; Abradatas therefore considers him an unjust 
man. I know that he would joyfully revolt from him to 
such a man as you are." 

Permission to send for her husband was readily granted ; 
and when Abradatas heard how generously his wife had 
been treated by the conqueror, he cheerfully marched 
with two thousand horse to join the forces of Cyrus. 
When he came up with the Persian scouts, he sent to the 
king to tell him who he was ; and Cyrus ordered him to 
be conducted immediately to his wife's tent. 

This unexpected meeting was most affectionate and 
joyful. When Panthea recounted the kind and respect- 
ful attention she had received from Cyrus, Abradatas ex- 
claimed, " What can I do, to pay the debt I owe him !" 



172 GOOD WIVES. 

In the warmth of his gratitude, he pressed the hand of 
Cyrus, and offered to be his friend, his servant, and his 
ally, promising to serve him at all times to the utmost of 
his skill and power. Cyrus treated him like a prince and 
like a brother. 

Preparations were then making for a battle with the 
Egyptians, and Abradatas caused a chariot to be fitted up 
magnificently for the occasion. 

When the time arrived, and he began to equip himself 
for the contest, Panthea brought him a golden helmet and 
arm-pieces, broad bracelets for his wrists, a long purple 
robe, and a crest dyed of a violet colour ; she had taken 
measure of her husband's armour, and had these things 
prepared without his knowledge. 

Much surprised at the costly gift, he exclaimed, "Have 
you made these for me by destroying your own orna- 
ments ?" " Not my most valuable one," replied Panthea; 
" for you are my greatest ornament." As she said this, 
she tried to put on the armour, and the tears flowed 
down her cheeks in spite of her efforts to conceal them. 

Abradatas was a very handsome man, and when he 
was equipped in his rich armour, he looked extremely 
noble and beautiful. 

As he took the reins, and was about to mount his char- 
iot, Panthea said : " O, Abradatas, if ever there was a 
woman who loved her husband better than her own soul, 
you know that I am such an one. I need not therefore, 
speak of things in particular ; my actions have convinc- 
ed you more than any words I can now use. Yet I de- 
clare, by the love we bear each other, I had rather be 
buried with you, approving yourself a brave man, than to 
live with you in disgrace and shame ; so much do I think 
you and myself worthy of the noblest things. 



P A N T H E A . 173 

"We owe great obligations to Cyrus. When I was 
his captive, he did not treat me as a slave, but kept me 
for you, as if he had been my brother. Besides, when 
he permitted me to send for you, I promised that you 
would be a more true and faithful friend than Araspes." 

Abradatas, laying his hand gently on her head, and 
raising his eyes to heaven, said, " O, great Jove, grant 
that I may be a husband worthy of Panthea, and a friend 
worthy of Cyrus !" 

When he had mounted the chariot, and the driver had 
shut the door, Panthea, kissed the place where his foot 
had rested, as he entered. Unknown to him, she follow- 
ed a short distance ; when he turned and perceived her, 
he said, " Take courage, Panthea ! Farewell, and be 
happy ; now go to your home." 

Though Abradatas and hisequippage made a gorgeous 
appearance, the people could look at nothing but Panthea, 
so long as she was in sight. Her attendants conducted 
her to her conveyance, and concealed her by throwing 
the covering of a tent over her. 

Abradatas, inspired by gratitude to Cyrus, and love for 
Panthea, insisted upon being placed in the foremost dan- 
ger, where he fought with strength and courage, almost 
supernatural. 

When the long and bloody struggle was over, and. 
Cyrus had given directions concerning the division of the 
spoils among his victorious army, he said, " Why does 
not Abradatas appear before me ? Have any of you seen 
him ?" One of the servants replied, " My sovereign, he 
comes not because he is no longer living. He died in 
the battle, as his chariot broke into the Egyptian ranks. 
It is said that his wife has taken up the dead body and 
brought it hither beside her in the carriage ; and her ser- 



174 GOOD WIVES. 

vants are digging a grave on a certain eminence by the 
river Pactolus. Panthea has decked him with all the or- 
naments she has, and is sitting on the ground, with his 
head on her knees." 

Cyrus smote himself, with an exclamation of deep sor- 
row. Having given orders to prepare rich ornaments 
and sheep, oxen, and horses, suitable for the burial of a 
prince, a friend, and an excellent man, he set off with 
a thousand horsemen, toward the scene of affliction. 

When he came in sight of Panthea, with the dead 
body reposing on her lap, he could not restrain his tears. 
" Alas, thou brave and faithful soul ! and hast thou gone 
from us ! M said he, affectionately taking the right hand 
of Abradatas. The hand separated from the wrist ; for 
it had been cut off by the Egyptians. Panthea shrieked 
piteously ; and taking the hand from Cyrus, she kissed 
it, and endeavoured to fit it to its place. " The rest is 
in the same condition, Cyrus," said she ; " but why 
should you see it. I know that I was partly the cause 
of his sufferings. Fool that I was ! I exhorted him to 
behave in such a manner as to gain your notice. He has 
died without reproach ; and I, who urged him on, sit here 
alive." 

Cyrus, for some time wept in silence ; at last he said, 
" Woman, he has died a noble death ; for he died victo- 
rious. Be assured he shall not want respect and honour 
in all things. Such sacrifices shall be offered as are pro- 
per for a brave man, and a monument shall be raised 
worthy of him and us. You shall be provided for, and 
such honours paid to you as your virtues deserve at my 
hands. Do but make known to me where you wish to 
go, and suitable attendance shall be immediately furnish- 
ed. Panthea expressed her gratitude ; adding, " Be as- 



P A N T H E A. 175 

sured, Cyrus, I will soon let you know to whom I wish 
to go." 

The generous king went away full of grief that those, 
who had loved each other so well, should be thus cruelly 
separated. When he had gone, Panthea dismissed all 
the attendants, except her nurse ; to whom she gave or- 
ders that her body, when she was dead, should be wrap- 
ped in the same mantle with her husband. The nurse, 
suspecting her intention, intreated her to change her pur- 
pose ; and finding her prayers of no avail, she sat down 
and' burst into tears. Panthea plunged a sword into her 
heart, and laying her head upon her husband's breast, ex- 
pired. The nurse uttered a shriek of lamentation ; and 
when she saw that all was indeed over, she covered the 
bodies, as she had been directed. 

When the three servants discovered what had been 
done after they were sent away, they likewise killed them- 
selves. Cyrus caused a magnificent monument to be 
erected, on which the names of Abradatas and Panthea 
were inscribed in Syriac letters. Below were three pil- 
lars raised in commemoration of the faithful attendants. 

The last act of the unfortunate Panthea must not be 
judged too harshly. She lived before the light of the 
gospel had dawned upon the world ; and in those stern 
times, self-sacrifice, under such circumstances, was deem- 
ed a sublime virtue. 

Without knowing it to be a sin, she rushed from a 
world where she saw nothing remaining for her but the 
lingering death of a breaking heart ; and we can only 
hope that her spirit was soon united to him she loved, in 
a region where ignorance is enlightened, and goodness 
made perfect. 



CHELONIS, 

WIFE OF CLEOMBROTUS, OF LACEDEMON. 

Chelonis was the daughter of Leonidas, king of Lace- 
demon. During the reign of this monarch Agis pro- 
posed an equal distribution of lands ; a proposition which 
was, of course, warmly seconded by the mass of the peo- 
ple, and generally opposed by the wealthy. Leonidas 
gave his influence to the aristocratic party. A formida- 
ble faction arose against him, of which his son-in-law, 
Cleombrotus, was persuaded to be the leader ; although 
the step was warmly opposed by his wife. 

Leonidas fled to the altar of Minerva for safety, 5 ^ and 
there his daughter Chelonis joined him in prayers to the 
goddess. Cleombrotus ascended the throne ; but his in- 
dignant wife refused to share his fortunes. As long as 
her father remained in sanctuary, she stayed with him ; 
and when he escaped to Tegea, she followed him into 
exile. 

It was not long before a counter-revolution took place, 
and Leonidas was recalled. The monarch, according to 
the fierce spirit of those ancient times, returned full of 
fury against the party which had dethroned him ; and 
his rebellious son-in-law was particularly marked out as 
an object of revenge. 

Cleombrotus took refuge in the Temple of Neptune. 

* According to the laws of ancient Greece, a criminal could not 
be taken from the temples of the gods. 



CHELONIS. 177 

Here he was sought by his angry father, who bitterly 
reproached him for his conduct. Cleombrotus, silent 
and confused, attempted no justification of himself. But 
with the change of fortune, Chelonis had changed : with 
dishevelled hair and a dress of deep mourning, she sat 
by her husband's side, endeavouring to console him in the 
most affectionate manner ; her two little children were 
at her feet. 

At this sight, Leonidas, and the soldiers, who were 
with him, were moved even to tears. 

Pointing to her mourning habit, Chelonis thus addressed 
the king : " This habit, my dear father, was not first 
assumed out of compassion to Cleombrotus. My sorrows 
began with your misfortunes, and have ever since 
remained my familiar companions. Now that you are 
again king of Sparta, can I assume royal ornaments, 
while the husband of my youth, whom you yourself be- 
stowed upon me, falls a victim to your vengeance ? If 
his own submission — if the tears of his wife and children 
cannot move you, he must suffer a severer punishment 
than even you wish to inflict upon him ; he must see his 
beloved wife die before him. How can I live, and sup- 
port the sight of women, when both my husband and my 
father have refused to listen to my supplications ? If 
Cleombrotus wronged you, I atoned for it by forsaking 
him to follow you ; but if you put him to death, you will 
make an apology for his ambition, by showing that a 
crown is so bright and desirable an object, that a son-in- 
law must be slain, and a daughter utterly disregarded, 
where that is in question." 

As Chelonis ended, she rested her cheek sorrowfully on 
her husband's head ; and looked at her father with tearful 
eyes. After a short struggle with himself, Leonidas 



180 GOOD WIVES. 

that she proves worthy of her father, worthy of you, and 
worthy of her grandfather. She has great talents ; she is 
an admirable economist; and she loves me with an entire 
affection. To these qualities she unites a taste for litera- 
ture, inspired by her tenderness for me. She has col- 
lected my works, which she reads perpetually, and even 
learns to repeat. When I am to plead, how great is the 
anxiety she suffers ! When I have succeeded, her joy is 
not less exquisite. She engages people to tell her what 
applauses I have gained, what acclamations I have excited, 
and what judgment is pronounced on my orations. When 
I am to speak in public she places herself as near to me 
as possible, under the cover of her veil, and listens with 
delight to the praises bestowed upon me. She sings my 
verses, and, untaught, adapts them to the lute : love is her 

only instructor. 

» Hence I expect with certainty that our happiness will 
be durable, and that it will daily increase. In me she is 
not captivated by youth or beauty, which are -liable to 
accident and decay, but with the lustre of my name. 
These are the sentiments which become a woman formed 
by your hand, and instructed by your precepts. Under 
your roof, she beheld only purity and virtue ; it was your 
approbation that taught her to love me. Your filial affec- 
tion for my mother led you in my childhood to praise and 
model me, to presage that I should one day be the man 
my wife now fancies me to be. We, therefore, mutually 
return you thanks : I, because you have given her to me ; 
she, because you have given me to her. You have se- 
lected us as formed for each other. Farewell." 



CALPHURNIA. 181 

PLINY TO CALPHURNIA. 

11 My eager desire to see you is incredible. Love is its 
first spring ; the next, that we have been so seldom sep- 
arated. I pass the greater part of the night in thinking 
of you. In the day also, at those hours in which I have 
been accustomed to see you, my feet carry me spontane- 
ously to your apartment, whence I constantly return out 
of humour and dejected, as if you had refused to admit me. 
There is one part of the day only that affords relief to 
my disquiet ; the time dedicated to pleading the cause of 
my friends. Judge what a life mine must be, when 
labour is my rest, and when cares and perplexities are my 
only comforts. Adieu." 
11 



MADAME KLOPSTOCK, 

WIFE OF FREDERIC-GOTTLIEB KLOPSTOCK. 

Klopstock was born at Quedlinburg, July, 1724. At 
school he very early attracted attention by his rapid pro- 
gress in learning ; and he was not twenty years of age 
when he first conceived the project of writing his great 
epic poem, called The Messiah. His poetic ardour was 
damped for awhile by the opinions of associates altogeth- 
er incapable of comprehending his genius ; but he soon 
found sympathizing and admiring friends, by whose 
means the poem was given to the public in 1748. It 
produced a wonderful sensation. The young, unknown 
student, at once became the most celebrated poet of his 
country, and was universally called " the German Mil- 
ton. ' ,# The father of Klopstock is spoken of as an ex- 
cellent man, with much simplicity of heart, and a strong 
belief in spiritual existences ; perhaps his son early re- 
ceived from him those deep religious feelings, which 
directed his choice of subjects, and characterized all his 
writings. 

Lavater was an enthusiastic admirer of " The Mes- 
siah ;" speaking of the writer, he calls him " That great 
author, that confidant of the angels !" The Odes of 
Klopstock, though not received with so much enthusiasm 

* Coleridge being asked it he thought this epithet was properly 
applied to Klopstock, answered, " Yes, he is, a very German 
Milton." 



MMB. KLOPSTOCK. 183 

a< )u< epic poem, are by many, considered his best claim 
to the admiration of posterity. 

The young man, who was so early enamoured of poe- 
try, of course easily became in love with the embodied 
poetry found in female beauty. 

The first object of his attachment was the sister of his 
intimate friend Schmidt ; but the lady, though a fervent 
admirer of his genius, could not reciprocate his affection. 

This disappointment produced a powerful effect on his 
sua leptible character, and it was difficult for him to con- 
quer the deep melancholy which impaired his health. 
Travel by degrees restored his cheerfulness. He spent 
nearly a year with Bodmer^ in Switzerland, enchanted 
by the grandeur of the scenery, and the simplicity of 
the inhabitants. 

An earnest invitation from Frederic the Fifth, and a 
pension of two thousand francs, induced him to go to 
Copenhagen, in 1751. On his way, he passed through 
Hamburg, where he became acquainted with Margaret 
Moiler, the lady whom he married in 1754 ; and who 
has since been famous in many languages, under the title 
of " Klopstock's Meta." 

No account of their love can equal her own charming 
letters. I cannot believe the most rigid grammarian, or 
the most fastidious prude, will wish a single line of her 
innocent, lisping English, omitted, or altered. 

The letters are addressed to Richardson, the author of 
Sir Charles Grandison ; 

Hamburg, March 14, 1758. 

dfe L 4h '. ;3fe JKi ■& Sk ^fe 

WWW "W www 

You will know all that concerns me. Love, dear sir, 
* Bodmer was the editor of an eminent Swiss Review. 



184 GOOD WIVES. 

is all what me concerns ! and love shall be all what I 
will tell you in this letter. 

In one happy night I read my husband's poem, the 
Messiah. I was extremely touched with it. The next 
day I asked one of his friends, who was the author of 
this poem ? and this was the first time I heard Klop- 
stock's name. I believe I fell immediately in love with 
him. At the least, my thoughts were ever with him 
filled, especially because his friend told me very much 
of his character. But I had no hopes ever to see him, 
when, quite unexpectedly, I heard that he should pass 
through Hamburg. I wrote immediately to the same 
friend, for procuring by his means that I might see the 
author of the Messiah, when in Hamburg. He told him 
that a certain girl at Hamburg wished to see him, and, 
for all recommendation, showed him some letters, in 
which I made bold to criticize Klopstock's verses. Klop- 
stock came, and came to me. I must confess, that, 
though greatly prepossessed of his qualities, I never 
thought him the amiable youth whom I found him. This 
made its effect. 

After having seen him two hours, I was obliged to 
pass the evening in a company, which had never been so 
wearisome to me. I could not speak, I could not play ; 
I thought I saw nothing but Klopstock. I saw him the 
next day, and the following, and we were very seriously 
friends. But the fourth day he departed. It was an strong 
hour the hour of his departure ! He wrote soon after, 
and from that time our correspondence began to be a very 
diligent one. I sincerely believed my love to be friend- 
ship. I spoke with my friends of nothing but Klopstock, 
and showed his letters. They rallied at me and said I 
was in love. I rallied them again, and said that they 
must have a very friendshipless heart, if they had no 



MME. KLOrSTOCK. 185 

idea of friendship to a man as well as to a woman. Thus 
it continued eight months, in which time my friends 
found aa much love in Klopstock's letters as in me. I 
perceived it likewise, but I could not believe it. At the 
la8t,Klopstock said plainly that he loved, and I startled 
AS for -i wrong thing. I answered, that it was no love, 
but friendship, as it was what I felt for him ; we had not 
seen one another enough to love. (As if love must have 
more time than friendship.) This was sincerely my 
moaning, and I had this meaning till Klopstock came 
again to Hamburg. This he did a year after we had 
seen one another the first time. We saw, we were 
friends, we loved ; and we believed that we loved ; and 
a short time after I could even tell Klopstock that I loved. 
But we were obliged to part again, and wait two years 
for our wedding. My mother would not let me marry a 
stranger. I could marry then without her consentment, 
as by the death of my father my fortune depended not 
on her ; but this was an horrible idea for me ; and thank 
heaven that I have prevailed my prayers. At this time, 
knowing Klopstock, she loves him as her lifely son, and 
thanks God that she has not persisted. We married, and 
I am the happiest wife in the world. In some few months 
it will be four years that I am so happy, and still I doat 
upon Klopstock as if he was my bridegroom. 

If you knew my husband, you would not wonder. If 
you knew his poem, I could describe him very briefly, in 
saying he is in all respects what he is as a poet. This 

I can say with all wifely modesty But I dare not 

speak of my husband ; I am all raptures when I do it. 
And as happy as I am in love, so happy am I in friend- 
ship, in my mother, two elder sisters, and five other wo- 
men. How rich I am ! 
11* 



186 GOOD WIVES. 

Hamburg, May 6, 1758. 

It is not possible, Sir, to tell you what a joy your let- 
ters give me. My heart is very able to esteem the favour 
that you, my dear Mr. Richardson, in your venerable 
age, are so condescending good, to answer so soon the 
letters of an unknown young woman, who has no other 
merit than a heart full of friendship. 

It will be a delightful occupation for me, to make you 
more acquainted with my husband's poem. Nobody can 
do it better than I, being the person that knows the most 
of that which is not yet published ; being always present 
at the birth of the young verses, which begin always by 
fragments here and there, of a subject of which his soul 
is just then filled. He has many great fragments of the 
whole work ready. You may think that persons who 
love as we do, have no need of two apartments ; we are 
always in the same. I, with my little work, still — still — 
only regarding sometimes my husband's sweet face, 
which is so venerable at that time ! With tears of devo- 
tion, and all the sublimity of the subject. My husband 
reading me his young verses and suffering my criticisms. 
Ten books are published, which I think probably tbe 
middle of the whole. I will, as soon as I can, translate 
you the arguments of these ten books, and what besides 
I think of them. The verses of the poem are without 
rhymes, and are hexameters, which sort of verses my 
husband has been the first to introduce in our language ; 
we being still closely attached to rhymes and iambics. 

I am ver}^ glad, Sir, that you will take my English as 
it is, I knew very well that it may not always be Eng- 
lish, but I thought for yon it was intelligible. 

I wish, Sir, I could fulfil your request of bringing you 
acquainted with so many good people as you think of. 



MME. KLOTSTOCK. 187 

i I love my friends dearly, and though they are 
good, 1 have however much to pardon, except in the sin- 
gle Klopstock alone. He is good, really good, in all his 
actions, in all the foldings of his heart. I know him ; 
and sometimes I think if we knew others in the same 
manner, the hetter we should find them. For it may be 
that an action displeas ia us which would please us, if we 
knew its true aim and whole extent. No one of my 
friends is so hap I am ; but no one has had courage 

to marry as 1 did : They ha \« married — as people marry; 
and they are happy — as people are happy. 

Hamburg, August 26, 1758. 
Why think you, Sir, that I answer so late ? I will 
trll you my reasons. Have not you guessed that I, sum- 
ming up all my happinesses, and not speaking of chil- 
dren, had none ? Yes, Sir, this has been my only wish 
ungratified for these four years. But thanks, thanks to 
God ! I am in full hope to be a mother in the month of 
November. The little preparations for my child (and 
they are so dear to me) have taken so much time, that I 
could not answer your letter, nor give you the promised 
scenes of the Messiah. This is likewise the reason 
wherefore I am still here ; for properly we dwell in Copen- 
hagen. Our staying here is only on a visit (but a long 
one) which we pay my family. My husband has been 
obliged to make a little visit alone to Copenhagen, I not 
being able to travel yet. He is yet absent — a cloud over 
my happiness ! He will soon return — But what does 
that help ? he is yet equally absent ! We write to each 
other every post — but what are letters to presence ? But 
I will speak no more of this little cloud ; I will only tell 
my happiness ! But I cannot tell how I rejoice ! A son 



188 GOOD WIVES. 

of my dear Klopstock ! Oh, when shall I have him ! It 
is long since I made the remark that the children of 
geniuses are not geniuses. No children at all, bad sons, 
or, at the most, lovely daughters, like you and Milton. 
*But a daughter or a son, only with a good heart, with- 
out genius, I will nevertheless love dearly. 

This is no letter, but only a newspsper of your Ham- 
burg daughter. When I have my husband and my child, 
I will write you more, (if God gives me health and life.) 
You will think that I shall be not a mother only, but a 
nurse also ; though the latter (thank God ! that the for- 
mer is not so too) is quite against fashion and good 
manners, and though nobody can think it possible to be 
always with the child at home. 

M. Klopstock. 

Alas ! the pleasant hopes of her pure and loving heart 
were not to be realized in this world. She did not live 
to bless her babe. The angels took them both to a hea- 
venly home. Were it not for a belief in another exist- 
ence, how severe and mysterious would appear the dis- 
pensations of Providence ? 

In a letter to a friend, Klopstock gives an account of 
the tender farewell they took of each other, under circum- 
stances so peculiarly agonizing. After having prayed 
with her for a long time, he said, as he bent over her, " Be 
my guardian angel, if God permits." " You have ever 
been mine," she replied. And when with stifled voice 
he again repeated, " If God permits, be my guardian an- 
gel !" she fixed her eyes upon him full of love, and said, 
" Ah, who would not be your guardian angel!" 

Just before she died, she said, with the serene smile of 
an angel, " My love, you will follow me !" 



MME. KLOPSTOCK. 189 

She was buried at Ottensen, in the neighbourhood of 
Hamburg. Klopstock requested her sisters to plant two 
trees by the grave, and her intimate friend promised to 
cover it with wild flowers. 

On the top of the grave-stone were carved two sheaves 
of wheat, one reclining upon the other ; under which was 
written : 

Seed sown by God 
To ripen in the day of Harvest 

Margaretta Klopstock. 

Waits where death is not, 
For her friend, her lover, her husband, 

Whom she so much loves, 
And by whom she is so much beloved ! 
But we shall all rise from this grave ; 
Thou, my Klopstock, and I, 
And our Son, 
For whom I died : 
To worship Him, 
Who died, and was buried, 
And is risen. 

She was born March 19th, 1728 ; 

Married, June 10th, 1754, 
And died November 28th, 1758. 

Her son sleeps in her arms. 

After her death her husband published a small volume 
of her writings, to which is prefixed an affectionate 
sketch of her character, some letters that passed between 
them during their brief separation, and letters from Klop- 
stock to his friends giving an account of her last illness. 

Their letters to each other are short, but very fervent 
— full of romantic tenderness, which a heartless world 
envies while it scorns. At one time she writes, " Ah, 
when will you come home ! It is wearisome, wearisome, 
living without you, to one who has lived with you." 



190 GOOD WIVES. 

Again she writes, * God be thanked ! I have received 
your letter. What a joy it was to me ! What will it be 
when you come ! I know not what I write, I am so 
full of joy. I received your letter at table ; I ate no 
more, as you may suppose. I was half beside myself; 
the tears started to my eyes. I went to my chamber. I 
could thank God only with my tears. But He under- 
stands our tears so well !" 

In one of his letters to her, he writes, " I know how 
much you think of me, my best, and dearest wife ; I 
know it by my own feelings. Beloved Meta, how I do 
long to see you ! I fold thee fast to my heart." 

These letters, so full of glowing expressions warm 
from the heart, were written when Klopstock had been 
united to his Meta'^ more than four years — one of the 
many beautiful proofs that true love grows deeper and 
stronger with time ! 

Klopstock rejoined his wife, at Hamburg, the last of 
September, after an absence of about seven weeks. 

In less than two months after his return, she went from 
him, to be no more his companion in this vale of tears. 

Her Posthumous Works consisted of Letters from the 
Dead to the Living, a tragedy called the Death of Abel, 
and several smaller pieces. They were written entirely 
for her own amusement, without the slightest idea of their 
ever being published. Her husband says she blushed, 
and was very much embarrassed, whenever he found her 
writing, and expressed a wish to see what she had been 
doing. He informs us that her taste was correct, and 
highly cultivated, and that her criticisms upon his poetry 
were always extremely apt and judicious. He says he 

* Meta is the contraction of Margaretta. 



MME. KLOPSTOCK 



191 



knew instantly by her countenance, whether his thoughts 
pleased her ; and so perfect was their sympathy, that their 
souls could hold delightful communion almost without the 
aid of language. 

Klopstock possessed one of the common attributes of 
great genius in an eminent degree ; he had the simplicity 
and frankness of a little child. A perpetual cheerfulness, 
almost amounting to gayety, formed a pleasing contrast 
to the seriousness of his writings. The pleasure he took 
in his own reputation sometimes exacted a smile ; but 
his was a kind of vanity that is never very offensive — it 
was instantly felt to be the childish ingenuousness of a 
heart too guileless to conceal any of its feelings. 

He died March 14, 1803, when he had nearly finished 
his seventy-ninth year. He lived unmarried till a few 
years before his death, when he allowed the marriage 
ceremony to be performed between him and a kinswoman 
of his wife, who had attended upon him faithfully during 
the feebleness and sufferings incident to advancing years ; 
he had no fortune to bequeath her, and he took this step 
in order to give her a legal claim to his pensions. 

During the latter part of his life, Klopstock resided at 
Hamburg. According to the wish he had always ex- 
pressed he was buried by the side of his beloved Meta. 

His funeral was conducted with almost princely pomp, 
and every possible honour was paid to his memory. 

A writer in the Biopraphie Universelle, says of Klop- 
stock, " Everything conspired in his works to excite en- 
thusiasm ; elevation of ideas ; beauty and boldness of im- 
agery ; perfect pictures of nature ; truth and profundity 
of sentiment ; and harmonious measure. As long as 
the German language lasts, he will be read with admira- 
tion." 



MADAME WIELAND, 

WIFE OF CHRISTOPHER MARTIN WIELAND. 

The celebrated Wieland was son of a Lutheran clergy- 
man. He was born at Biberach in Swabia, in 1733. 
His genius began to unfold itself at an early age, and ex- 
cited expectations among his friends, which were after- 
wards more than realized. 

He was scarcely eighteen years old, when he became 
enthusiastically in love with Sophia von Gutterman, a 
second cousin, who visited his father's house. The 
young lady, being preengaged, and regarding her inte- 
resting relative as a mere youth, allowed an intimacy, 
which her beauty and intellect made very dangerous to 
his peace. Sophia von Gutterman afterward became 
Madame La Roche ; and Wieland's early passion for her 
settled down into a calm and enduring friendship. 

Some of the early writings of Wieland attracted the 
universal attention of the literary patriarch, Bodmer ; and 
he invited the young genius to visit him at his romantic 
residence near Zurich. The invitation was accepted in 
1752, and Wieland occupied the apartment, which had 
been assigned to Klopstock the year preceding. 

The works of Wciland at this period, and for several 
years afterward, breathed the religious faith and strict 
morality, which he had imbibed from his father. But his 
relative La Roche, was secretary to Count Stadion, a 
diplomatist and courtier, who in 1763 retired from pub- 



MME. WIELAND. 193 

lie life to his princely mansion at Warthausen, about 
three miles from Biberach ; and in this family Wieland 
became a favourite. 

The library contained many volumes of French litera- 
ture and philosophy, which Wieland seized upon with the 
eagerness of a young and active mind. He had formerly 
been prone to religious mysticism, but his writings after this 
period were characterized by an opposite tendency. He in- 
troduced many French and English writers to Germany, 
through the medium of translation, and gained extensive 
fame by his own productions. Strict moralists find much 
to condemn in his writings, but they are always charac- 
terized by a lively imagination and a benevolent spirit. 
The emperor of Russia conferred upon him the order of 
St. Anne, and Napoleon that of the Legion of Honour. 

But our business is principally with his domestic 
character. In the autumn of 1765 he married Anna 
Dorothea Hillenbrandt, the daughter of a merchant at 
Augsburg. She was not a woman of uncommon intellect; 
it is supposed that she knew very little about her hus- 
band's writings, although she looked up to him with re- 
spect and admiration almost amounting to worship. She 
had a serene temper, and a most affectionate heart. 
Wieland was impetuous, and trifles often provoked him 
to angry eloquence. On these occasions, her gentleness 
and patience always won the victory, and Wieland soon 
laughed at his own ravings. It is said that some of his 
most powerful expressions were struck out in these trans- 
ports of passion. 

In 1769, Wieland was appointed Professor of Law at 
the University of Erfurt, with the title of privy counsel- 
lor ; an honour rarely bestowed upon so young a 
man. He found the University in a state of decay ; but 



194 



GOOD WIVES 



his eloquent lectures soon doubled the number of students. 
He complained much of the dulness of society. The 
only house that collected all the wit and fashion of Erfurt 
was of a licentious character; and Wieland, notwith- 
standing the grossness of some of his writings, was reluc- 
tant to bring his wife and children, and his young pupil 
La Roche within the polluted atmosphere. 

In 1758, Wieland was appointed tutor to the prince, 
by the Duchess Dowager, Anne Amelia ; at the same 
time, he received the title of Aulic Counsellor to the Duke 
of Saxe Weimar, and the Elector of Mentz. 

In consequence of these honours, he removed from 
Erfurt to Weimar, which soon became renowned as the 
" Athens of Germany." The splendid constellation of 
genius, drawn thither by the munificent patronage of the 
reigning family, rendered the title as just as it was flat- 
tering. 

The theatre was conducted at the expense of the state ; 
the performers were selected with great care ; the music 
was the very best that could be procured ; and costumes 
and scenery were critically exact ; the public, as in an- 
cient Greece and Rome, were admitted gratuitously. 
The picturesque walks of the ducal grounds were like- 
wise opened to the public. Here genius, in all its various 
manifestations of power, found patronage and honour. 
Goethe, Schiller, and Wieland, were the master-spirits ; 
but a crowd of minor authors were attracted by the intel- 
lectual enchantments of the place. The celebrated Her- 
der was the bishop of this little metropolis, and the first 
masters of music and the fine arts were employed in his 
cathedral. 

In this state of intellectual luxury Wieland lived the 
greater part of his life ; and here he wrote many of his 



MM E . WIS LAUD. 195 

best productions, among- which was the widely celebrated 
Obcron, published in 1780. 

But in all the plenitude of his fame, his heart seems 
to have been in his family. In 1782, he thus writes to 
Gleiin : " How gladly would I accept your invitation, 
and fly to you, and shake you by both hands, and talk 
over with you the days of our youth, and sun ourselves 
afresh in the aurora of literature ; but a thousand silken 
bands bind me to Weimar. lam rooted into the ground 
here, and occupations that admit no delay press around 
me. Besides, how can I drag away my wife from her 
nine children, when the joint ages of the six youngest do 
not amount to twenty years ? Our house is a little world, 
in which our presence and government cannot be spared. 
But you, a single man, might come hither, and amuse 
yourself with seeing these little elves creep, one after 
another, out of their lurking holes." 

In a letter to Sophia de la Roche, he says : " My 
sweetest hours are those in which I see about me, in all 
their glee of childhood, my whole possee of little half way 
things, between apes and angels." 

In a letter written in 1787, he observes : " My wife is 
a model of every feminine and domestic virtue ; free from 
the usual foibles of her sex, with a head unbiassed by 
prejudices, and a moral character that would do honour 
to a saint. During the two-and-twenty years I have 
lived with her, I have never for one moment wished my- 
self unmarried. Her existence is so intimately connected 
with my own, that I cannot be absent from her a week 
without experiencing feelings similar to the home-sickness 
of the Swiss. Of our fourteen children, nine are living ; 
all amiable and all healthy in body and mind. They 
and their mother form the happiness of my life," 



96 GOOD WIVES. 

At another time, he says : " I experience more and 
more that all true human happiness lies within the 
charmed circle of married domestic life. I become con- 
tinually more and more the man, and in that proportion 
happier and better. Labour is a pleasure to me, because 
I am working for my children ; and I am internally con- 
vinced that my calm trust in the hand which weaves the 
web of our destinies will not disappoint me or mine." 

If fame brings its pleasures, they never come unattend- 
ed by inconveniences. All the distinguished literati, 
princes, and nobles, who were travelling, were sure to 
visit Weimar, and made a point of seeing Wieland ; 
forgetting that his perpetual sacrifice of ease and quiet 
might be a higher price than he chose to pay for the 
honour of their company. 

This circumstance made Wieland anxious for retire- 
ment. His oldest son had a taste for agriculture, and as 
his favourite daughter (who married a son of the poet 
Gesner) resided in Switzerland, he resolved to purchase 
a farm at Osmahstadt, in the vicinity of Zurich. He 
removed in 1798 ; at which time his family consisted of 
himself and wife, three sons, two unmarried daughters, 
two widowed daughters, and four grand-children. The 
artists of Weimar volunteered their drawings for the ne- 
cessary alterations at Osmanstadt, and the reigning Duke 
sent from his own gardens the statue of a siren, to deco- 
rate the fountain in the court-yard. To the day of his 
death, he received a thousand dollars per annum from 
his princely pupil. 

In 1799, Sophia de la Roche, now a widow, visited 
Wieland at his new residence, and gave an interesting 
account of his manner of life, in one of her books, entitled 
" Schattenrisse meiner Errinnerungen." 



MM E . WIELAND. 197 

She says : " On the fifteenth of July, 1799, after a sepa- 
ration of almost thirty years, T reached Wieland's house 
at erening, and again embraced the worthy friend of my 
youth, his wife, and four of his daughters. One of my 
buc grand-daughters accompanied me, and being fatigued 
we retired early to rest : but I could not sleep. The tide 
of feelings and recollections rushed over me too vehe- 
mently: still 1 was in his house, and I was happy. I 
heard him, before he went to bed. playing on his harpsi- 
chord, according to his custom; he was rehearsing a 
Swiss tune, which we had admired together at Biberach. 

11 The breakfast had an attractive neatness and sim- 
plicity; no servant attended: one daughter brought a 
glass of buttermilk ; another a plate of cherries, the toast- 
ed bread, and the home-made butter ; and the young man 
presented to my Julia a handful of roses: we had seen 
him while we were rising, employed in mowing the grass- 
plot in the garden. During the forenoon, Mrs. Wieland 
led me to the dairy and the. several objects of her super- 
intendence, and showed me the delicate produce of her 
spinning-wheel. Wieland himself conducted me to see 
his new shorn flock, and told me what crops were to suc- 
ceed the fragrant fields of bean and clover which I then 
beheld. 

11 He took me to spend a day with the Dowager Duch- 
ess, at her residence in TiefTurt. Goethe was of the party, 
and agreed to dine with us the next day at Osmanstadt. 
Then, indeed, I sat in a temple of the gods ! while at the 
table, which was not additionally provided, I listened to 
these two patriarchs of German literature addressing 
each other w T ith the friendly thou and thee* of the an- 

• A respectful address in German is put in the third person in- 
12 



198 GOOD WIVES. 

cients, and discussing, with polished frankness, the men, 
and books, and events of the times. 

"A bust of Count Stadion ornamented the mantel- 
piece ; Gothe asked me whether it were a good likeness, 
analyzed its expression, and was almost immediately on 
a friendly footing with me, as if he too had been ac- 
quainted with us under that roof. I repeated to him an 
observation I had heard Wieland make to the old Count, 
that all great men in the evening of life sought a still 
retirement in the lap of nature. 

" When the ladies withdrew to walk in the alley of 
lime-trees, Herder's daughter came to join us. 

" Another of the delightful days I passed here was 
that on which the Duchess Amalia, in all her affability, 
came to see us, and, leaning on Wieland's arm, walked 
up and down the garden with us. On that same day, 
Herder and his wife joined our party at table, and brought 
with them John Paul Richter, a comparatively young 
man, of whose genius high opinions were entertained. 
In the evening, when our guests had retired, Wieland 
read to us a terrific dream by this author. 

" The day on which Wieland's name was inserted in 
the manorial books was an interesting one. He gave a 
rural feast to his neighbours on becoming a fellow tenant, 
his property being copy-hold. 

" The villagers spread themselves over the green, took 
their refreshments in the open air, shook Wieland and 
his sons by the hand, and prayed God to bless him and 

stead of the second. This custom has sometimes been carried to 
a ridiculous extent where great personages were concerned. 
'| Have his Highness gone this way ?" inquired a gentleman of a 
group of peasants The answer was, " No sir ; but their poodle 
have just passed :" tife investing even the dog with the plurality 
belonging to rank. 



MRS. ROSS. 213 

made herself known ; and if she was tenderly beloved 
before she made such sacrifices, it will readily be believed 
that she was idolized now. 

They departed together for Philadelphia, where they 
were immediately married. But alas, the perfect happi- 
they enjoyed was not to be of long duration. A 
languor, which resisted all medical art, attacked the sys- 
tem of Mrs. Ross, and threatened to terminate her life. 
It was soon discovered that her lover had been wounded 
by a poisoned arrow, and the venom pervaded all her 
hlnod. Her husband watched over her with the most 
tender solicitude ; and as he saw one remedy after an- 
other fail to restore the health that had been so affection- 
ately sacrificed for him, his hopes gradually settled into 
despair, and he died broken-hearted in the spring of 
177S. The widow's grief was softened by the certainty 
of soon following him she had loved so fondly. She 
summoned sufficient fortitude to cross the Atlantic again, 
in order to implore the forgiveness of her parents. With 
them she languished a little while, and died. Her spirit 
rejoined her husband in July, 1779, when she was twen- 
ty-five years old. A monument is erected to her mem- 
ory in Hammersmith church, recording these interesting 
events. 



Two instances of a similar kind are recorded in his- 
tory, in which the victims were perfectly aware that they 
sacrificed their own lives to save their husbands : 

Queen Eleanor, wife of Edward the First, being 
informed that the king was wounded with a poisoned 
arrow, drew forth the venom with her own lips, and died 
for him. Charing Cross, in London, takes its name from 
a cross which Edward erected to her memory. Some 



214 GOOD WIVES. 

antiquarians say it was so called from the village of Char- 
ing, in which the monument was built : others deny the 
existence of any such village, and contend that it derived 
its name from being the resting-place of chere Reyne, or 
the dear queen. 



Sybella, wife of Robert of Normandy, showed the 
same courageous attachment to her husband. The prince 
being wounded in this shocking manner, was informed 
that recovery was impossible, unless the poison was 
sucked out. The amiable son of the Conqueror resolved 
to die, rather than allow any one to make the dangerous 
experiment. But while he slept, Sybella, his duchess, 
gently applied her lips to the wound ; and before he 
awoke, the deadly venom had passed into her veins. She 
did not long survive this proof of her love. 



S E L I N A . 211 

A tranquil, meek dignity, was her prevailing charac- 
teristic. 

In the winter of 17S7 some idle scoffer inclosed two 
masquerade tickets in a cover directed to her. She re- 
ceived the insult very calmly ; and handed the tickets to 
one of her deacons, requesting him to sell them for as 
high a price as he could, and give the money to the de- 
serving poor. The deacon carried them to the west end 
of the town, where he sold them for a guinea ; with this 
money he liberated a poor debtor from the Poultry Comp- 
ter. 

The Countess of Huntingdon was as distinguished for 
her self-possession, and acute penetration into character, 
as she was for abundant and judicious kmdness. 

She died June 17, 1791, at the age of eighty-four. 



MRS. ROSS, 

WIFE OF CAPTAIN ROSS. 

Captain Ross was an officer in the English army 
during the American Revolutionary war. He was much 
attached to a young lady, whose engagements to him her 
parents refused to ratify. When military duty compelled 
him to cross the Atlantic, his lady-love, without apprising 
him of her intentions, resolved to follow him. For this 
purpose, she disguised herself in men's clothes, and took 
passage for America. She arrived immediately after a 
battle had been fought between the Indians and the de- 
tachment to which Capt. Ross belonged. Among the 
dead bodies, she quickly recognized the object of her 
search. He was wounded and senseless ; but she dis- 
covered a slight pulsation of the heart. She applied her 
lips to the wound, from which she sucked the flowing 
blood until it was staunched. This remedy restored him 
to life. She had sufficient presence of mind to restrain 
her impetuous joy, well knowing how fatal sudden emo- 
tion might prove to one in his weak and languid condition. 
During forty days she watched over him with the most 
unremitting attention, completely disguised by her dress 
and the artificial colouring of her complexion. During 
his illness, the young officer talked continually of the 
object of his affections, and repeatedly expressed his fears 
that he should not live to be united to her. 

When his health was sufficiently restored, the lady 



mme. n U B E R . 203 

ing up the connexion ; but the more this misfortune be- 
came certain, the more Maria determined not to abandon 
her lover. She made no resistance to the will of her 
father, but quietly waited until she had attained a lawful 
age to act for herself. 

Poor Huber, fearful of losing his precious prize, tried 
to conceal from the world, and even from himself, that 
an entire deprivation of sight was his inevitable lot ; but 
total darkness came upon him, and he could no longer 
deny that the case was hopeless. The affliction was 
made doubly keen by fears that Maria would desert 
him ; but he might have trusted the strength of a wo- 
man's heart. — Miss Lullin resisted the persuasions and 
persecutions of her family, and as soon as she was 
twenty-five years old, she led to the altar the blind object 
of her youthful affections. The generous girl had loved 
him in his brilliant days of youth and gayety, and she 
would not forsake him when a thick veil fell forever be- 
tween him and the glories of the external world. There 
is something exceedingly beautiful and affecting in this 
union. Those who witnessed it, at once felt a strong 
internal conviction that the blessing of God would rest 
on that gentle and heroic wife. 

Voltaire often alluded to the circumstance in his corre- 
spondence, and it forms an episode in Madame de StaeTs 
Delphine. 

Mrs. Huber had no reason to regret the disinterested 
step she had taken. Providence provides for those who 
trust in him. 

Huber's active and brilliant mind overcame the impedi- 
ments occasioned by loss of vision. His attention was 
drawn to the history of bees ; and by the assistance of 
his wife and son, he observed their habits so closely, that 



204 GOOD WIVES. 

he soon became one of the most distinguished naturalists 
in Europe. His very blindness added to his celebrity ; 
for men naturally admire intellectual strength overcoming 
physical obstructions. The musical talents, which in 
youth had made Huber a favourite guest, now enlivened 
his domestic fireside. He enjoyed exercise in the open 
air, and when his beloved wife was unable to accompany 
him, he took a solitary ramble, guided by threads, which 
he had caused to be stretched in the neighbouring walks. 
He was amiable and benevolent, and all who approached 
him were inspired with love and respect. 

Even great success came to him unattended by its 
usual evils ; for the most envious did not venture to de- 
tract from the merits of a kind-hearted man, suffering 
under one of the greatest of human deprivations. 

Notwithstanding the loss of his eyes, Huber's counte- 
nance was the very sun-dial of his soul — expressing 
every ray of thought and every shade of feeling. The 
sound of his voice was solemn and impressive. A gen- 
tleman, who saw him for a few hours, said : " I no longer 
wonder that young people are so prone to believe the 
blind supernaturally inspired." 

During forty years of happy union, Mrs. Huber proved 
herself worthy of such a husband's love. He was the 
object of her kindest, and most unremitting attention. 
She read to him, she wrote for him, she walked with 
him, she watched his bees for him ; in a word, her eyes 
and her heart were wholly devoted to his service. 

Huber's affection for her was only equalled by his re- 
spect. Alluding to her low stature, he used to say, 
" mens magna in cor pore parvo" (a great soul in a small 
body.) 

He used to say, " While she live(J, I was not sensible 
of the misfortune of being blind." 



MME. HUBEE, 205 

His children, inspired by their mother's example, at- 
tended upon him with the most devoted affection. His 
son, Pierre Huber, who himself became famous for his 
history of the economy of ants, was a valuable assistant, 
and beloved companion. He made a set of raised types, 
with which his father could amuse himself, by printing 
letters to his friends. 

After the death of his wife, Huber lived with a mar- 
ried daughter at Lausanne. 

Loving and beloved, he closed his calm and useful 
life at the age of eighty-one. In one of his last letters 
to a friend, he says, " Resignation and serenity are bless- 
ings which have not been denied me." 

12* 



QUEEN MARY, 

WIFE OF WILLIAM III. 

Mary, the daughter of James the Second, was a most 
affectionate wife to William, Prince of Orange. 

When asked what she intended her husband should 
be, if she became Queen, she answered, " All rule and 
authority shall be vested in him. There is but one com- 
mand, which I wish him to obey; and that is, ' Husbands, 
love your wives? For myself, I shall follow the injunc- 
tion, ' Wives, be obedient to your husbands in all things? " 

She kept the promise she had voluntarily made. They 
were proclaimed under the title of William and Mary, but 
the power was entirely vested in him. She was an ami- 
able and excellent princess, and by her example made 
industry and domestic virtue fashionable. She was con- 
stant and earnest in her attachment to the king, and all 
her efforts were to promote his interests, and make him 
beloved by the people. Her letter to Lady Russell, in 
which she deplores the bustle and pomp of royalty, be- 
cause it separated her so much from her husband, is a 
beautiful proof how much stronger were the feelings of 
the woman than those of the Queen. 

The king had great confidence in her ability and dis- 
cretion. During his absence, she was several times left 
regent of the kingdom, and although the conflicting state 
of parties rendered the office exceedingly difficult, she 
discharged her duty in a remarkably energetic and judi- 
cious manner. 



QUEEN MARY. 207 

She died in 1694, in her thirty-third year. Her hus- 
band showed a degree of affliction hardly to be expected 
from one whose feelings were so habitually subdued, that 
the English considered him cold in his affections. For 
several weeks, he was entirely incapable of attending to 
any business. " I cannot do otherwise than grieve," said 
he to Archbishop Tennison, " since I have lost a wife, 
who during the seventeen years I have lived with her, 
never committed an indiscretion. " 



QUEEN ANNE, 

WIFE OF GEORGE OF DENMARK. 

The Princess Anne, younger daughter of James the 
Second, who married Prince George of Denmark, was 
likewise a most amiable and affectionate wife, and a very- 
judicious mother. During the illness of her husband, 
which lasted several years, she would never leave his 
bed, and often sat up half the night with him. Lady 
Russell, speaking of the few days that preceded the 
death of Prince George, says : " Sometimes they wept, 
sometimes they mourned; then sat silent, hand in hand; 
he sick in his bed, and she the carefullest nurse to him 
that can be imagined." 

The Prince died in 1708. As her elder sister, Mary, 
died without children, Anne was proclaimed Queen, after 
the death of William. She had a numerous family, but 
none of them survived her. 

It is a singular circumstance that the grandmother of 
Queens Mary and Anne was a poor country girl, em- 
ployed to carry beer from a brewery in London. She 
was handsome, and the brewer married her. He left her 
a young widow, with a large fortune. She applied to 
Mr. Hyde, the lawyer, to transact her business. He be- 
came enamoured of his fair client, and married her. Mr. 
Hyde became Earl of Clarendon ; his daughter married 
the Duke of York, afterwards James the Second, and 
became the mother of Mary, and Anne. 



COUNTESS OF DORSET, 

WIFE OF THOS. SACKVIL, EARL OF DORSET. 

The following tribute to the virtues of a good wife, 
occurs in the last will and testament of the celebrated 
Earl of Dorset, one of the finest scholars of his time, 
Chancellor of Oxford, and Lord High Treasurer of Eng- 
land, during the reign of Elizabeth. 

" Imprimis, I give and bequeath unto the Lady Cicilie, 
Countess of Dorset, my most virtuous, faithful and dearly 
beloved wife, — not as any recompense for her infinite 
merit towards me, — who, for incomparable love, zeal, 
and hearty affection ever showed unto me, and for those 
her so rare, reverent and many virtues, of charity, mod- 
esty, fidelity, humility, secrecy, wisdom, patience, and a 
mind replete with all piety and goodness, which evermore 
both have, and do abound in her, deserveth to be honour- 
ed, loved, and esteemed above all the transitory wealth 
and treasures of this world, and therefore by no price of 
earthly riches can by me be valued, recompensed or re- 
quited, — to her therefore, my most virtuous, faithful, and 
entirely beloved wife, — not, I say, as a recompense, but 
as a true token and testimony of my unspeakable love, 
affection, estimation and reverence ; long since fixed and 
settled in my heart and soul towards her, I give," &c. 



SELINA, 

COUNTESS OF HUNTINGDON. 

This noble and wealthy lady was celebrated for being 
a firm and zealous Methodist, at a period when people of 
her rank universally considered that sect as vulgar and 
despicable ; and this fact in itself announces a strong 
character and generous feelings. 

She was most devotedly attached to her husband, and 
when he died, her heart yearned for full possession of that 
religious faith which promises re-union in the world to 
come. She was handsome and distinguished, and the 
world of fashion did not fail to offer its allurements and 
its flattery ; but she had fixed her hopes on something 
more enduring, and nothing could tempt her to swerve 
from the path she had chosen. During forty-five years 
of widowhood, her spirit held close communion with the 
dear departed object of her affections ; and every look and 
tone of his were enshrined in memory. She caused her 
beautiful bust to be placed upon his tomb, at Ashby de-la- 
Zouch, in the County of Leicester; and in her will, she 
requested that her body might be placed by his side, hab- 
ited in the same dress of white silk, which she had worn 
at the opening of the Methodist Chapel, in Goodman's 
Fields. 

In the course of her life., she expended more than one 
hundred thousand pounds in acts of public and private 
benevolence ! 



MME. WIELAND. 201 

Wieland died in January, 1S13. When he thought 
ml was approaching, he began to repeat his own 
translation of Hamlet's Soliloquy; but at the words " To 
du ." " to sleep" his doubting spirit passed. 

His body lay in state several days, on cushions of blue 
silk, in a richly gilded coffin. A white shroud enveloped 
the limbs : the black velvet calotte still remained on his 
head, around which was braided a wreath of laurel; a 
copy of his Oberon and Musarion formed his pillow. A 
great deal of pomp attended the removal of the body to 
Osmanstadt. 

Wieland, in his time, was at the head of the classic 
school of German writers. His imagination luxuriated 
in the mythology of the ancients. Perhaps his early im- 
pressions still maintained an influence of which he was 
unconscious ; and in this poetic form his affections might 
have retained some belief in supernatural agency, though 
false philosophy had driven it from his understanding. 

" I'd rather be 



A Pagan, suckled in a creed outworn ; 
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea, 
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn ; 
Have sight of Proteus coming from the sea ; 
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn." 

Wordsworth. 



MADAME HUBEE. . 

WIFE OF FRANCOIS HUBER. 

Francis Huber was born at Geneva on the 2d of July, 
1750, of a highly respectable family, remarkable for in- 
telligence. His father was distinguished for wit and 
originality in conversation, and for a cultivated taste in 
the fine arts. Voltaire particularly delighted in his 
company, on account of the freshness and brilliancy of 
his mind, and his skill in music. He excelled in pictures 
of game, and wrote an interesting work on the flight of 
birds of prey. His son inherited his taste and talent. 

Study by day, and romance reading during the night, 
impaired his health, and weakened his sight. When he 
was fifteen years old, the physicians advised entire free- 
dom from all literary occupation. For this purpose, he 
went to reside in a village near Paris, where he followed 
the plough, and was for the time, a real farmer. Here 
he acquired a great fondness for rural life, and became 
strongly attached to the kind and worthy peasants among 
whom he resided. His health was restored, but with the 
prospect of approaching blindness. 

He had, however, sufficiently good eyes to see and 
love Marie Aimee Lullin, a young lady who had been 
his companion at dancing-school. They loved, as warm 
young hearts will love, and dreamed of no possibility of 
separation. M. Lullin regarded the increasing proba- 
bility of Huber's blindness, a sufficient reason for break- 



MME. WIELAND, 199 

his : they had music and a dance, in which we joined, 
and sang and rejoiced until twilight. May his felicity 
be perpetual ! he so thoroughly deserves it." 

But perpetual felicity is not the lot of mortals. Wie- 
land's rural speculation was unfortunate. The crops did 
not equal his hopes ; the movements of armies rendered 
his property insecure, and lessened its value ; and, like 
most gentlemen farmers, he soon became involved in pe- 
cuniary embarrassments. To these troubles a more 
grievous affliction was added in 1801, by the death of 
his wife. She was buried at the bottom of the garden, 
in a family tomb intended to inclose his own remains. 

Osmantium^ now became a dreary residence to Wie- 
land, and he resolved to return to Weimar. He thus 
writes to Bodmer, early in 1803 : 

" Since the death of my wife, I have lost the love of 
existence ; and the lustre which once shone on all things 
around me is dimmed. I would fain withdraw my atten- 
tion from a painful feeling, which especially seizes on me 
whenever I lie down or get up : but memory will be busy. 
Never, since I was born, did I love anything so much as 
I loved my wife. If I but knew she was in the room, or 
if at times she stepped in and said a word or two, that 
was enough — my guardian angel had been near : — but 
since she has been gone, my very labours fall off in 
spirit, and my writings please me no longer. Why 
could we not, like Philemon and Baucis, have died on 
one day ?" 

When it was known that Wieland wished to return to 
Weimar, the Duke provided for him a house, opening 
into the grounds of the Duchess Dowager, and command- 

* The name of the estate. 



200 . GOOD WIVES. 

ing a noble prospect. It was announced that henceforth 
hewas to form one of the ducal household ; and a place 
was assigned to him in the state-box at the theatre. 
After six years of absence, Father Wieland (as the lite- 
rary patriarch was then called) was everywhere haded 
with a loud burst of welcome. Herder, Schiller, and 
other great minds flocked around him ; and Gothe vaned 
a decoration of his Torquato Tasso, in order to give an 
opportunity for a plaudit of congratulation when Wieland 
first appeared at the theatre. 

There is something extremely beautiful in such heart- 
felt tributes to intellect. Methinks the united gratitude 
and admiration of so many minds acting upon one must 
have an electric power, strong enough to elicit sparks ot 
genius even from the dullest materials. It is indeed a 
pitvthat spontaneous applause has so often been bestowed 
upon the highly-gifted corrupters of mankind. 

Wieland lived long enough to survive several of his 
most valued friends. Herder, and the Duchess Amaha 
died before him. 

The estate at Osmanstadt had passed into the hands 
of one of his friends ; and it was agreed that his wish of 
being buried by the side of his wife should he realized. 

The court-sculptor undertook to erect a monument 
with suitable decorations. On one side was recorded the 
death of Anna Dorothea Wieland, beneath two inter- 
twined hands, the emblem of conjugal affection ; on the 
other side a space was left for the record of Wieland s 
death, above which was sculptured a winged lyre and a 
star. Wieland himself wrote a simple epitaph, which 
signified, 

" In life they were united by love, 

And here they repose together in death." 



LADY HARRIET ACKLAND, 

WIFE OF MAJOR ACKLAND. 

Major Ackland was an officer in the British army, 
during the war, which terminated in the acknowledged 
independence of the American Colonies. 

His wife accompanied him to Canada, in the beginning 
of 1776. During the campaign of that year, she traversed 
a great extent of territory, exposed to the inclemencies of 
various seasons, and to all the privations and incon- 
veniences attendant upon an active military life. For a 
long time, Major Ackland was very ill in a miserable hut 
at Chamblee ; and his lady, accustomed as she was to 
luxury and indulgence, zealously performed the offices 
of nurse, servant, and friend. 

The fatigue and sufTe rings she was obliged to endure, 
distressed her husband so much, that he absolutely forbade 
her going with him to Ticonderoga, in 1777 ; but he be- 
ing wounded at the battle of Hubberton, nothing could 
prevent her from crossing Lake Champlain, to attend 
upon him. After this she insisted upon following all his 
fortunes, and would take no denial. Together they tra- 
versed the dreary forests to Fort Edward. Here they 
were subject to sudden alarms, that no person laid down 
to sleep without being ready to start at a moment's warn- 
ing. One night, Major Ackland's tent took fire. One 
of the grenadiers rushed in and dragged out the first per- 
son he laid hold of, which proved to be the Major. Lady 



216 GOOD WIVES. 

Harriet, awakened to a confused sense of danger, crept 
out under the the opposite part of the tent. She caught 
a glimpse of her husband rushing back into the flames to 
save her : he was again rescued, though severely burned. 
The tent, and all it contained, was consumed. 

This accident, of course, exposed Lady Ackland to 
many additional inconveniences ; but she maintained a 
courageous cheerfulness, and endured all her hardships 
without a murmur. 

On the 19th of September, her fortitude was put to the 
severest trial. Her husband, being aware that the army 
were constantly exposed to an encounter with the enemy, 
during their march, ordered the women to follow in the 
rear of the artillery and baggage. In that situation all 
the uproar of the battle was distinctly audible ; and she 
had the agonizing knowledge that her beloved husband 
was in the front ranks of danger. She had three female 
companions with her, the Baroness Reidesel, and the 
wives of Major Harnage and Lieutenant Kennels. 

As the action grew more bloody, the ladies took refuge 
in an uninhabited house, w T here for hours together they 
heard one continued fire of cannon and musketry. To 
this place of retreat the surgeons soon began to bring in 
the wounded and dying, among which many a familiar 
face was recognised. Major Harnage was brought in 
dreadfully wounded, and Lieutenant Kennels, was shot 
dead. In this terrible situation, the poor women, parti- 
cularly Lady Ackland, retained a wonderful degree of 
firmness and presence of mind. 

On the 7th of October, she was again within hearing 
of all the tumult of battle, and again her place of refuge 
was among the wounded and dying. After a long period 
of agonizing suspense, she received intelligence that the 






LADY HARRIET ACKLAND. 217 

troops were defeated, and her husband wounded, and 
taken prisoner. The Baroness Eeidesel says, ll On hear- 
ing this, she became very miserable ; we tried to comfort 
her by telling her the wound was slight, and that she 
would perhaps receive permission to go to him. She was 
a charming woman, and very fond of him." On the 
morning of the Sth, Lady Ackland sent a most urgent 
petition to General Burgoyne, entreating liberty to pass 
into the American camp, for the purpose of obtaining 
General Gates's permission to attend upon her husband. 

On this occasion, General Burgoyne says, " I could 
readily believe that the tenderest forms were capable of 
the utmost patience and fortitude, for my experience had 
furnished me with abundant proofs ; but I was astonished 
at this proposition. After so long an agitation of the 
spirits — exhausted, not only from want of rest, but abso- 
lutely from want of food — drenched in rain for twelve 
hours together — that a woman should be capable of such 
an undertaking as delivering herself to the enemy, pro- 
bably in the night, and uncertain into what hands she 
might fall at first, appeared to me an effort above human 
nature ! The assistance I was able to give her was small 
indeed. I had not even a cup of wine to offer ; but I 
was told she obtained, from some fortunate hand, a little 
rum, and some dirty water. All I could furnish w r as an 
open boat, and a few lines, written on dirty, wet paper, 
recommending her to the protection of General Gates." 

The chaplain of the regiment cheerfully undertook to 
accompany her, and with two other attendants she was 
rowed down the river to meet the enemy. The night 
was far advanced when the boat reached the out-posts of 
the American camp ; and the sentinel, apprehensive of 
treachery, could not be prevailed upon either to let it pass, 
13 



218 GOOD WIVES. 

or to allow the passengers to come on shore ; he threat- 
ened to fire into the boat, if it stirred before daylight. 
Lady Ackland's sufferings were thus protracted through 
seven or eight cold and dreary hours. She was at last 
permitted to proceed ; and it is hardly necessary to say 
that General Gates received her with the utmost kindness 
and respect. An escort was provided to convey her safely 
to Albany, where she rejoined her wounded companion. 

In order to form a proper estimate of this lady's forti- 
tude, we must recollect that she had always been accus- 
tomed to the refined indulgences attendant upon rank and 
wealth ; that her frame was delicate ; her manners gentle, 
and above all, that she was in a state of health, which 
rendered such exposure peculiarly inconvenient and 
hazardous. A strong character and ardent affection were 
all that fitted her for such trials. 

Of her remaining biography little is known ; but we 
may safely conclude that domestic love was strengthened 
by the hardships she had endured, and that in her hus- 
band's gratitude she found a rich and abundant reward.^ 

* Since the above was printed, the editor has been allowed to 
examine the private journal of the late excellent General Dear- 
born, who commanded at the post where Lady Ackland's boat 
was first hailed. It is not true that any threats were used, or any 
greater detention occasioned, than was necessary to ascertain that 
the passengers came with a flag of truce. Lady Ackland was in- 
deed prevailed upon to go no farther that night, because it was 
dark and stormy, and the presiding officer was able to give her en- 
couraging news concerning her husband. From first to last her 
treatment in the American camp was compassionate and respectful. 



BARONESS REIDESEL, 

WIFE OF GENERAL REIDESEL. 

We have already mentioned this lady as the compa- 
nion of Lady Ackland during the trying scenes of the 
19th of September, and the 7th of October. When 
Lady Ackland went to the American camp, the Baroness 
Reidesel remained surrounded by the wounded and the 
dying. A more forlorn and discouraging situation can 
hardly be imagined. It was difficult to obtain even the 
most common comforts of life ; she was surrounded by 
little children, who kept her in a state of constant anxiety 
lest their noise should disturb the dying officers ; and 
often, after a day of fatiguing exertion, she passed the 
whole night without sleep. Nothing could exceed her 
attention to the poor sufferers around her. She dressed 
their wounds, prepared cushions and cordials for them, 
and gave them any little delicate morsel of nourishment 
she could obtain, though she herself was scantily pro- 
vided. This excited the most enthusiastic gratitude, and 
she was universally considered as a benefactress to the 
army. Before General Burgoyne began his retreat, it 
was necessary to bury General Frazer, who had just died 
of his wound. General Gates, not being aware it was a 
funeral, ordered the procession to be fired upon. The 
Baroness Reidesel says, " Many cannon-balls flew close 
by me, but I had my eyes directed to the height where 
my husband was standing, amidst the fire of the enemy ; 
and I could not think of my own danger." 



220 GOOD WIVES. 

The retreat of the English army was principally made 
in the silence of night ; for their route was environed hy 
dangers. It was evening when the Baroness Reidesel 
arrived at Saratoga. Her dress was thoroughly soaked 
with rain, and in this condition she was obliged to remain 
all night ; though she was at last able to obtain a little 
straw, on which she reposed near the fire. Yet, tired as 
she was, she was anxious to proceed. She asked an offi- 
cer, " Why do we not continue our retreat? My hus- 
band has promised to cover it, and bring the army through." 
" Poor, dear Lady," replied the officer, " drenched as you 
are, I wonder you have so much courage to persevere. 
I wish you were our commander. General Burgoyne 
is so much fatigued that he intends to halt here to-night." 

Next morning the retreat was continued, and orders 
were given to burn the handsome houses and mills of 
General Schuyler. Such is the wanton havoc of war! 

In the afternoon, the firing of cannon being heard, 
General Reidesel urged his wife to take refuge in a house 
not far off. The calash, which conveyed her and her 
children, was fired on. She escaped by throwing her 
children under the seat, and lying upon them, so that the 
balls passed over, but a poor wounded soldier, who was 
with them, not perceiving the danger quick enough to 
dodge, received another wound. 

An awful cannonade was directed against the house in 
which they sought shelter. The baroness and her chil- 
dren took refuge in the cellar ; there she remained all 
day, the little ones lying on the earth, with their heads on 
her lap ; and there she passed a sleepless and dreadful 
night. Eleven cannon balls passed through the house, 
and she could distinctly hear them roll away. One poor 
fellow, who was waiting to have a shattered leg ampu- 



BARONESS REIDESEL. 221 

tated, was struck by a shot that carried away the other. 
His comrades had left him, and when the ladies went to 
his assistance, they found him in a corner of the room 
scarcely breathing. 

During the whole of this dangerous crisis, the Baron- 
ess was in the most cruel suspense concerning the fate of 
her husband. In this distressing situation they remained 
six days. General Reidesel and an English officer once 
came to see them, at the risk of their lives. When they 
went away, the officer said, " Not for ten thousand gui- 
would I come here again. This visit has almost 
broken my heart." 

On the 17th of October, General Burgoyne made a 
formal surrender, and this frightful state of things was 
ended. The moment it was safe, General Reidesel sent 
for his family to come to him. She says, " As we rode 
through the American camp it was a great consolation to 
see that no one eyed us resentfully ; on the contrary, 
all showed compassion at the sight of a woman with little 
children. As I drew near the tents, a handsome man 
came up, and, kissing my children affectionately, bade 
me not be afraid. This reception affected me almost to 
tears. After he had introduced me to the American 
commander, he said, ' The English officers are to dine 
with General Gates to-day. You will be embarrassed to 
meet so much company. Come to my tent with your 
children, where I will prepare a frugal dinner and give 
it with free will.' I now found this was General Schuy- 
ler ! I said to him, ' You are certainly a husband and a 
father, you have treated me and my little ones with so 
much kindness.' We partook of an excellent dinner ; 
and now that my husband was out of danger, I was con- 
tent." General Schuyler informed them that he resided 
13* 



222 GOOD WIVES. 

at Albany, where General Burgoyne was about to visit 
him ; and he urged them to join the party. Her husband 
wished to accept the invitation ; but as he was unable to 
start at the same time she did, General Schuyler had the 
politeness to send a French officer to escort her during 
the first part of the journey. At the house where she 
was to remain for the night, she found a flippant French 
surgeon, who, with. profligate pertness, informed her that 
it would be wise to leave the conquered and remain 
with the conquerors. He would not believe she was a 
General's wife ; saying no woman of that rank would 
follow her husband into the camp. 

The presence of General Reidesel soon put a stop to 
his impertinence ; and they arrived at Albany in safety 
and peace. 

General Schuyler, with his wife and daughters, re- 
ceived them as heartily as if they had been old friends. 
General Burgoyne was sensibly affected by this noble 
conduct ; it painfully reminded him of the houses and 
mills he had burned down during his retreat. " I have 
done you much injury," said he ; " yet you show me 
great kindness." " That was the fortune of war," re- 
plied the excellent man ; ' Let us think no more of it." 

jfc «&£. 4k -¥- 4fc 46 

•7F "TV" "7? "7f "TV W 

Whether the troubles of the Baroness Reidesel ended 
with the American war, is not recorded. It is probable 
that the remainder of her life passed without bringing 
any greater calamities than usually fall to the lot of 
mortals. 



MRS. JUDSON, 

WIFE OF ADONIRAM JUDSON. 

Mrs. Ann H. Judson was the daughter of Mr. John 
Hasseltine, and was born in Bradford, Massachusetts, in 
December, 1789. Activity, gayety, and enthusiasm, were 
her early characteristics. During the period of extreme 
youth her busy mind and ardent feelings found abundant 
employment in the social pleasures of the world, which 
she enjoyed^with a peculiarly keen zest ; but before she 
was seventeen years old, her attention was aroused to 
serious subjects, and her religious impressions imbibed 
all the fervour of her natural character. 

In 1S10, she became acquainted with Mr. Adoniram 
Judson, who was then preparing to engage in a mission 
to India, for the conversion of the heathen. A mutual 
attachment sprung up between them. The situation was 
peculiar, and somewhat difficult. If she accepted Mr. 
Judson, she must, of course, consent to leave her home 
and friends, and go to a far distant clime, in order to try 
an experiment, the success of which, to say the least, was 
very uncertain ; then there was the conscientious fear that 
human affection would have more influence than it ought 
to have, in a step for which she would receive the credit 
of religious zeal. 

The result was her marriage with Mr. Judson, in Feb- 
ruary, 1812. About a fortnight after the wedding they 
embarked for India, accompanied by several others, who 



224 GOOD WIVES. 

had been ordained as missionaries ; among whom were 
Mr. and Mrs. Newell. Mrs. Judson, and Mrs. Harriet 
Newell were the first women that left America for the 
purpose of devoting themselves to the cause of missions. 

We shall pass over the doubts and encouragements, the 
trials and triumphs, which fell to their lot, while engaged 
in this undertaking: Whoever wishes to see an interest- 
ing account of the mission, will find it in a small volume 
written by the Rev. James D. Knowles ; a book so uni- 
versally known, that it scarcely need be mentioned. 

We have Mrs. Judson's own testimony that her union 
was happy. In a letter to her sister, she says : " I find 
Mr. Judson one of the kindest, most faithful, and affec- 
tionate of husbands. His conversation frequently dissi- 
pates the gloomy clouds of spiritual darkness which hang 
over my mind, and brightens my hope of a happy eter- 
nity. I hope God will make us instrumental of preparing 
each other for usefulness in this world, and greater hap- 
piness in a future existence. 

During the first years of the mission, Mrs. Judson had 
many inconveniences to encounter, and she met them 
with a singular degree of patience and energy ; but her 
trials at this period were very largely mingled with bless- 
ings and enjoyments. Her real afflictions began with the 
war between England and the Burman Empire in 1824. 
On the suspicion of being spies, paid by the English gov- 
ernment, Mr. Judson, and several other individuals, were 
imprisoned and treated with great severity. The weight 
of this calamity was increased by separation from their 
friends and fellow-labourers ; for they were at Ava, while 
the main body of the missionaries were at Rangoon. 

On the 8th of June, Mr. and Mrs. Judson were pre- 
paring for dinner, when in rushed an officer, holding a 



MRS. JUDSON. 225 

black book, with a dozen Burmans, among whom one 
with a spotted face was immediately recognised as " the 
son of the prison," or the executioner. This man threw 
Mr. Judson violently on the floor, and began to bind him 
with cords. 

Mrs. Judson begged him to be merciful, promising to 
give him money. " Take her too," exclaimed the brutal 
officer ; " she also is a foreigner." Her husband, with an 
imploring look, entreated that she might remain, at least 
till they received further orders. They consented to this ; 
and having bound his fetters very tight, they dragged 
him off, she knew not whither. 

She followed, offering them money, and entreating 
them to loosen the cords a little. Finding her efforts un- 
availing, she sent Moung Ing (a native convert to whom 
they were much attached), to make some further exertions 
for the benefit of the prisoner ; but the unfeeling jailer 
only drew his cords the tighter. Moung Ing returned 
with the information that the foreigners had been thrown 
into the death-prison. It would be an idle attempt to de- 
scribe how the night was passed by that wretched wife. 
A guard of ten ruffians was placed round the house, who 
spared no pains to insult and terrify her. Their loud 
carousings and fierce language tormented her till morning, 
when her worst fears were confirmed by hearing that the 
prisoners had each three pair of iron fetters, and were 
fastened to a long pole. Her greatest source of anguish 
was her inability to make any exertions in their behalf. 
In vain she begged and entreated permission to state her 
case to some officers of government. At last she wrote 
a note to the king's sister, but received it again with the 
cold reply that the princess could not understand it. 
Another wearisome day and sleepless night passed heav- 



226 GOOD WIVES. 

ily on, and brought to her no hope. On the third day- 
she begged to wait upon the governor of the city with a 
present. This was touching the right key. The gover- 
nor received her graciously, and heard her earnest expos- 
tulations against imprisoning Americans, who were a 
people distinct from the English, and entirely unconnect- 
ed with their wars. He said it was out of his power to re- 
lease her husband : he however promised to make him 
more comfortable, and referred to his head-officer for the 
means. The officer demanded a secret bribe of one hun- 
dred dollars, two pieces of fine cloth, and two pieces of 
handkerchiefs. The money was paid, and the other arti- 
cles excused, because she did not own them. This fee 
gave her access to the prison, bat she was not allowed to 
enter. Mr. Judson crawled to the door and talked with 
her a few minutes. Even this poor consolation was grudg- 
ingly allowed by the jailers, and they soon ordered her 
to go away, telling her they would drag her off, if she 
did not. 

Again Mrs. Judson sought an interview with a female 
relative of the royal family. With heart-stirring elo- 
quence she represented the extreme injustice of her hus- 
band's case ; begged the lady to imagine what would be 
her own wretchedness in a similar situation ; alone and 
unprotected in a strange land, daily expecting the death 
of the friend she best loved, and that friend innocent of 
any crime ; and concluded by imploring her mediation 
with the Queen. 

The lady's feelings were touched, and she promised to 
use her influence. But the hopes thus excited were 
dashed to the ground, by her Majesty's cool answer, 
" The teachers will not die ; let them remain as they 
are." 



MRS. JUDSON. 227 

In the mean time, the property of the foreigners was 
Confiscated. Airs. Judson, being forewarned of this, 
secreted as many articles of value as she could. The 
officers conducted the business with more regard to her 
Feelings than Bhe expected. Seeing her deeply affected, 
they apologized, by reminding her of the obedience they 
owed the King, assuring her their duty was a painful 
one. They left the books, wearing apparel, and medi- 
cines. When they had taken all the money they could 
find, they asked, " Is this all the silver you have ?" Mrs. 
Judson would not resort to a falsehood, even in these 
trying circumstances : she simply replied, " The house 
is in your possession ; search for yourselves." 

Even the sad interviews at the prison gate were now 
forbidden ; and a man who was discovered carrying let- 
ters, was beaten and put in the stocks. His release could 
net be obtained under ten dollars. With the rapacity of 
despotic governments, every pretext was seized upon to 
extort money from the unfortunate sufferers ; and diffi- 
culties were multiplied, for the express purpose of trying 
how much they would give to be extricated. 

The governor of the city was exceedingly angry when 
he found Mrs. Judson had told of the sum she had given 
him and his officers, for a slight amelioration in her 
husband's condition. "You are very bad!" he ex- 
claimed ; " Why did you tell of that ? " " The royal 
treasurer asked me ; and what could I say ? " she re- 
plied. " Say you gave me nothing." " My religion 
forbids a lie. Had you stood by me with your dagger 
raised, I could not have said what you suggest." Upon 
this, the governor's wife immediately took her part, say- 
ing she liked such sincerity. This lady ever after con- 
tinued a firm friend to Mrs. Judson ; and the governor 



22S GOOD WIVES. 

was pacified by the present of a beautiful opera-glass, 
which had lately been sent from England. 

For the seven succeeding months, Mrs. Judson daily 
continued her importunate entreaties to different mem- 
bers of the royal family, and various branches of the 
government. Sometimes, she was cheered with a ray 
of hope, which only made the succeeding darkness more 
insupportable. During this period, she suffered under 
every species of oppression : all the officers, from the 
highest to the lowest, taxed their ingenuity to invent 
schemes of extortion. 

Liberty to go to the prison was gained by reiterated 
presents to those in authority ; but often, for days in suc- 
cession, she was not allowed to go till after dark, although 
it was two miles from her residence. 

In a letter to her husband's brother, after relating these 
particulars, she says : " Oh, how many, many times have 
I returned from that dreary prison at nine o'clock at 
night, solitary, and worn out with fatigue and anxiety, 
and thrown myself down in that same rocking chair, 
which you and Deacon L. provided for me in Boston, 
and endeavoured to invent some new scheme for the re- 
lease of the prisoners. Sometimes,, for a moment, my 
thoughts would glance towards my beloved friends in 
America — but for nearly a year and a half every thought 
was so entirely engrossed with present scenes and suffer- 
ings, that I seldom reflected on a single occurrence of my 
former life, or recollected that I had a friend in existence 
out of Ava." 

The only commander, who had any success against 
the British forces, was Bandoola ; and he, consequently, 
had almost unlimited influence with the king. As a last 
resource, Mrs. Judson resolved to apply to this officer for 



MRS. JUDSON. 229 

the release of the missionaries ; although some cautioned 
her against this step, lest being reminded of them, he 
should order their instant execution. The petition was 
received graciously ; but her excited hopes were soon 
dashed, by a message stating that the city of Rangoon 
must be retaken before Bandoola could attend to her 
cause. 

The unhappy wife was, however, allowed to make a 
little bamboo room within the prison inclosures, where 
she could sometimes spend two or three hours with her 
husband. 

The birth of a little daughter interrupted these visits ; 
and as she could not during her illness make daily pre- 
sents, and offer daily petitions, the cause of the prisoners 
lost ground. Besides this, the total defeat of Bandoola 
exasperated the government still more against all foreign- 
ers. The missionaries were removed to an inner prison, 
in five pair of fetters each, and deprived of their mats, 
pillows, &c. 

Mrs. Judson's babe was not two months old, when she 
received these tidings. She immediately repaired to the 
governor, but was sent away with the assurance that he 
could not help her. But she persevered until she ob- 
tained an audience. "With pathetic eloquence she re- 
minded him of his former kindness, of his promise to 
stand by her to the last, and never, under any circum- 
stances, allow Mr. Judson to be put to death. The old 
man melted into tears, as he listened to her impassioned 
entreaties. " I pity you," said he ; "I knew you would 
make me feel ; and therefore I ordered that you should 
not be admitted. Believe me, I do not wish to increase 
the sufferings of the prisoners. When I am ordered to 
execute them, the least I can do is to keep them out of 



230 GOOD WIVES. 

sight. Three times I have received intimations to murder 
them privately ; but I would not do it. And I now re- 
peat it, though I execute all the others, I will save your 
husband. But I cannot release him, — and you must not 
ask it." 

It was the hot season of that burning climate, and a 
multitude of prisoners were confined in one room. The 
consequence was universal debility and loss of appetite. 
Mr. Judson was seized with a fever, which threatened to 
terminate his life. 

Mrs. Judson entreated permission to attend upon him ; 
and the governor, worn out by her importunities, consented 
that he should be removed to a little bamboo hut, where 
she could nurse him. The hovel was too low to admit 
of standing upright ; but to people in their circumstances 
it seemed a delightful abode. She was sometimes driven 
out by the brutal jailers ; but in general she was able to 
stay two hours together with her suffering companion. 

This gleam of consolation soon vanished. At the end 
of two or three days, the governor sent to call her from 
one of these visits. Much alarmed, she hastened to obey 
the summons. He said he only wanted to consult with 
her about his watch ; but she afterwards found that his 
object was to detain her until the white prisoners were 
carried away from the city. 

For many months her feelings had been disconsolate 
enough ; but when she heard of this new affliction, her 
agony amounted almost to distraction. She ran hither 
and thither, inquiring of every one she met ; but no one 
would tell where the prisoners had been conveyed. At 
last, an old woman said they were to be carried to Ama- 
rapora. The governor confirmed this, pleading the 
necessity of obedience to the king, and his ignorance of 



MRS. JUDSON. 231 

the intentions of government. " You can do no more 
for your husband," said he ; " take care of yourself." 

This was indeed a moment of despair. Even the 
miserable little bamboo prison had become an object of 
love and pleasant association : now all within it was silent 
and cheerless. The melancholy occupation of watching 
the invalid, of preparing his medicines and food, had 
ceased. He was carried off, she knew not whither, nor 
for what dreadful purpose. It can easily be conjectured 
what resolution was taken by a woman of her strong 
heart. She determined to follow her husband. The 
governor's charge to take care of herself implied personal 
danger ; and this became more evident by his wish that 
she should not leave Ava until after dark, when he pro- 
mised to send a man to open the gates. 

She sailed for Amarapora in a covered boat, with her 
little infant, two adopted Burman children, and a Benga- 
lee cook. The day was dreadfully hot, but they pro- 
ceeded in tolerable comfort, till within two miles of the 
government-house. They were then obliged to take a 
cart and jostle over the dust under a scorching sun. 
When they arrived there, they found the prisoners had 
been sent on two hours before ; and it became necessary 
to go four miles further, in the same uncomfortable man- 
ner, with a baby in her weary arms. 

On her arrival at Oung-pen-la, she found Mr. Judson 
in a state of deplorable misery. The prisoners had 
been tied together two and two, and driven along in the 
heat of the day, till their feet bled at every step. One 
of them died in consequence of this treatment. Mr. 
Judson, still suffering under the remains of his fever, 
narrowly escaped death. His anxious wife, almost ex- 
hausted with fatigue and wretchedness, could obtain no 
refreshment for him or herself. 



232 GOOD WIVES. 

His first words were, " I hoped you would not follow 
me; for you cannot live here." The corner of a filthy 
hut furnished shelter for the night, and after drinking a 
little half-boiled water, Mrs. Judson lay down upon a 
mat and slept. 

In this abode she spent the next six months ; without 
any furniture, even a chair, or seat of any kind. 

The very morning after her arrival at Oung-pen-la, the 
Burman child, who was able to assist in the care of the 
babe, was taken with the small pox. No assistance, or 
medicine, could be procured. All day long Mrs. Judson 
was going from the prison to the hut, and from the hut 
to the prison, with her infant in her arms. Sometimes 
she obtained a little relief by leaving the child asleep 
with its father. The little Burman was delirious with a 
raging fever, and the babe took her dreadful disorder. 
This was a load of misery that seems almost too much 
for mortal strength. The children at last recovered ; but 
Mrs. Judson sunk under her extraordinary exertions. 
She became so weak as to be scarcely able to walk to 
the prison. In this debilitated state she set off in a cart 
for Ava, in order to procure some medicines she had left 
there. There her disorder became so violent, that she 
had no hope of recovery. She says : " My only anxiety 
now was to return to Oung-pen-la, to die near the prison." 
Frequent doses of laudanum so far subdued the disease, 
that the sufferer was enabled to set off. It was in the 
rainy season, and the oxen, that dragged the heavy cart, 
were half buried in mud. 

Nature was almost exhausted, when she arrived at 
Oung-pen-la. The good native cook was so much affected 
by her emaciated appearance, that he burst into tears. 
This faithful creature seemed to be the only solace left in 



mi l a . judson, 233 

their forlorn condition. The babe, deprived of her usual 
nourishment by her mother's illness, was a source of con- 
stant anxiety, particularly as no nurse could be obtained. 
By making presents to the jailers, Mr. Judson obtained 
leave to carry the poor famishing thing round the village, 
and appeal to the compassion of mothers. Sometimes, 
too, the almost dying wife was indulged in the " un- 
speakable consolation " of seeing her husband for a little 
while. But, in general, they suffered under the same 
system of extortion and petty tyranny. 

The execution of the prisoners was prevented by the 
death of the king's brother, who had sent word to keep 
them, till he came to witness it : luckily for their peace 
of mind, they did not know of this circumstance till the 
danger was past. At last, the hour of deliverance came. 
The English, uniformly victorious, compelled the Bur- 
mans to submit to such terms as they proposed ; and their 
first demand was the release of all English and American 
captives. How joyfully these tidings must have sounded, 
after such a long, dark season of despondency ! Mrs. 
Judson says : " It was on a cool, moonlight evening in 
the month of March, 1826, that with hearts filled with 
gratitude to God, and overflowing w r ith joy at our pros- 
pects, we passed down the Iravvaddy, surrounded by six 
or eight golden boats, and accompanied by all we had on 
earth. For the first time, for more than a year and a 
half, we felt that we were free." 

Sir Archibald Campbell, the English commander, 
treated them with the utmost respect and attention. A 
tent near his own was erected for them while they re- 
mained in the camp, and a large gun-boat was provided 
to convey them in safety to Rangoon. 

It may well be imagined that their friends received 
14 



234 GOOD WIVES. 

them with great joy, after being entirely ignorant of their 
fate for nearly two years. During the latter part of their 
captivity, Mrs. Judson had twice been brought to the very 
brink of the grave : indeed, once, after their removal from 
Oung-pen-la, before they came under the protection of 
the English, she was supposed to be quite dead. These 
shocks had enfeebled her constitution ; but she was re- 
stored to tolerable health, and was able to nurse her feeble 
little infant. 

Soon after their return to Rangoon, Mr. Judson was 
obliged to leave her for a short time, on business con- 
nected with the missionary establishment. In a letter to 
her mother, he says : " Our parting was much less pain- 
ful than many others had been. We had been preserved 
through so many trials and vicissitudes, that a separation 
of three or four months, attended with no hazards to either 
party, seemed a light thing. We parted, therefore, with 
cheerful hearts, confident of a speedy re-union, and in- 
dulging fond anticipations of future years of domestic 
happiness. In a letter to me dated 14th of September, 
my wife wrote, ' For the first time, since we were broken 
up at Ava, I feel myself at home. Poor little Maria is 
still feeble. I sometimes hope she is getting better ; then 
again she declines to her former weakness. When I ask 
her where Papa is, she always starts up and points toward 
the sea. May God preserve and bless you, and restore 
you to your new and old home, is the prayer of your 
affectionate Ann.' " 

This was the last letter the wanderer received. The 
home to which he returned was desolate indeed. 

Early in December, Mrs. Judson was attacked with a 
violent fever, which continued more or less severe until 
she died. During her illness, she expressed regret at 



MRS. JUDSON. 235 

leaving her schools before other missionaries arrived ; 
but her head was much affected, and for the last few days 
she said but little. Once she murmured, " The teacher 
is long in coming: I must die alone, and leave my little- 
one ; but I acquiesce in the will of God. I am not afraid 
of death, but I am afraid I shall not be able to bear these 
pains. Tell the teacher the disease was most violent, 
and I could not write ; tell him how I suffered and died ; 
tell him all that you see ; and take care of all things till 
he returns." When unable to notice anything else, she 
still asked to see her child, and charged the nurse to in- 
dulge it in everything, until its father came home. At 
eight o'clock on the evening of the 24th of December, 
with one exclamation of distress, in the Burman lan- 
guage, she expired. 

In letters written soon after her decease, Mr. Judson 
says : " The news of the death of my beloved wife has 
thrown a gloom over all my future prospects, and forever 
embittered the recollection of the present journey, in con- 
sequence of which I was absent from her dying bed, and 
prevented from affording the spiritual comfort her lonely 
circumstances peculiarly required : and of contributing to 
avert the fatal catastrophe, which has deprived me of the 
first of women and the best of wives. 

" It affords me some comfort, that she not only con- 
sented to my leaving her, but uniformly gave her advice 
in favour of the measure, whenever I hesitated concern- 
ing my duty. The doctor thinks her last illness was 
occasioned by the severe privations, and long protracted 
sufferings, she had undergone. With what meekness, 
patience, magnanimity and Christian fortitude, did she 
endure those sufferings ! But can I wish they had been 
less ? Can I wish to rob her crown of a single gem ? 



236 GOOD WIVES. 

Much she saw and suffered of the evil of this evil world ; 
and eminently was she qualified to enjoy the pure and 
holy rest into which she has entered. True, she has 
been taken from a sphere, in which she was singularly 
qualified, by her natural disposition, her winning man- 
ners, her devoted zeal, and her perfect acquaintance with 
the language, to be extensively serviceable to the cause 
of Christ ; true, she has been torn from her husband's 
bleeding heart, and from her darling babe ; but infinite 
wisdom and love have presided, as ever, in this afflicting 
dispensation." 

One of the English prisoners, who had been confined 
with Mr. Judson, pays the following tribute to the me- 
mory of this excellent woman : 

" Mrs. Judson was the author of those eloquent and 
forcible appeals to the government, which prepared them 
by degrees for submission to terms of peace, never ex- 
pected by any, who knew the inflexible pride of the 
Burman court. 

" The overflowing of my grateful feelings, on behalf 
of myself and fellow prisoners, compel me to add a tribute 
of public thanks to that amiable and humane woman, 
who, though living at a distance of two miles from our 
prison, without means of conveyance, and very feeble in 
health, forgot her own comfort and infirmity, and almost 
every day visited us, sought out and administered to our 
wants, and contributed in every way to alleviate our 
misery. 

" While the government left us destitute of food, she, 
with unwearied perseverance, by some means or other, 
obtained for us a constant supply. When our tattered 
clothes evinced the extremity of our distress, she w T as 
ever ready to replenish our scanty wardrobe. When the 



MRS. JUDSON. 237 

unfeeling avarice of our keepers confined us inside, or 
made our feet fast in the stocks, she, like a ministering 
angel, never ceased her applications to the government, 
until she was authorized to communicate the grateful 
news of our enlargement, or of some respite from our 
galling oppressions." ^ # ^ # 

In a few short months, good angels carried the little 
orphan Maria to the mother by whom she was so fondly 
loved. They are placed side by side in that distant land, 
under the wide-spreading branches of the Hope-tree.^ 
Two marbles, erected by the Board of Missions, com- 
memorate departed innocence and virtue. 

* Hopia. 



MRS. EXPERIENCE WEST, 

WIFE OF REV. DR. SAMUEL WEST 



" His head was silvered o'er with age, 
And long experience made him sage." 

All who reside in that part of Massachusetts called 
" the old Colony," remember Father West. He was 
born in Yarmouth, in 1730. He remained with his 
respectable parents, and laboured on their farm, till he 
was past twenty years of age. His extraordinary capa- 
city for learning attracted the attention of some intelligent 
and benevolent men, by whose assistance he was enabled 
to enter Harvard University. His whole soul was so en- 
tirely engrossed by study, that he neglected the usual 
courtesies of life. When he walked to Cambridge, to be 
examined for admission to the college, he took off his 
shoes and stockings, and slung them over his shoulder, 
to relieve his hot and dusty feet. A scholar who offered 
himself in this style, of course excited some merriment ; 
but the government soon found that he was not a proper 
object for ridicule ; he disputed with them about Greek 
and Latin derivations, till they were obliged to yield to 
their uncouth pupil. 

His talents and erudition gave him a very distinguished 
rank in his class. In 1764, he was ordained at New 
Bedford, where he remained pastor forty-three years. 
He was one of the first men in New England for pro- 



MRS. EXPERIENCE WEST. 239 

r ound scriptural knowledge ; but he was not a popular 
preacher. 

His mind was so absorbed in metaphysics, that he 
would continue an argument with his pupils from Mon- 
day morning till Saturday night, and on the next Monday 
morning take up the thread exactly where he had left it. 
No wonder his attention was somewhat abstracted from 
his sermons ! It is said that he often preached the same 
discourse week after week. Upon one occasion, his 
daughter, finding the people were very weary of a ser- 
mon about Zaccheus in the tree, turned down the leaf 
upon a new text and left the Bible open on his desk, the 
next Sabbath : Father West, unconscious of the manoeu- 
vre, preached on the passage she had pointed out ; every 
sentence of Scripture was so familiar to his memory, that 
preparation was unnecessary. 

This abstractedness of mind naturally made him very 
peculiar in his domestic habits. Innumerable stories are 
told of his eccentricities. Among other things, he is 
said to have been seen going to mill with the corn on his 
own back while he led the horse. Indeed nothing could 
exceed his awkwardness in all the common affairs of 
life ; he could remember nothing except what was con- 
tained in books. 

The wonder is that he should ever have married any- 
thing but a Hebrew Grammar. Fortunately, his absence 
of mind did not extend to matrimony ; and his good luck, 
or his discrimination, led him to choose a very intelli- 
gent, prudent, amiable woman, who knew how to appre- 
ciate his talents and respect his virtues, while her discreet 
management supplied all his deficiencies. 

He was sensible of her worth, and praised it in his 
own odd way. In allusion to her tall stature, he used 



240 GOOD WIVES. 

often to say to his friends, " I have found by long expe- 
rience that it is good to be married." 

Doctor West was a zealous whig ; during the revolu- 
tionary struggle, he wrote ma v iy powerful articles for the 
newspapers. He deciphered the famous letter of Doctor 
Church, which exposed to the enemy the particular state 
of the American army ; after puzzling over it several 
days he suddenly thought of the solution at midnight; 
and jumping from his bed, he capered about the room, 
exclaiming, like Archimedes, " I have got it ! I have got 
it!" 

In person and manners Doctor West bore a strong 
resemblance to the celebrated Doctor Johnson. The epi- 
thet of Father, was universally bestowed upon him ; it 
probably originated in veneration for his extraordinary 
powers of mind, and the honesty, sincerity, and benevo- 
lence of his heart. 



LADY ARABELLA JOHNSON, 

WIFE OF MR. ISAAC JOHNSON. 

Although the History of Lady Arabella Johnson is 
familiar to every one, it would be wrong to omit all 
mention of her well-tried and faithful affection, in a book 
intended as a monument to exemplary wives. She was 
daughter of Thomas, Earl of Lincoln ; a family which 
Mather pronounces " The best of any nobleman then in 
England." 

The Lady Arabella married Mr. Isaac Johnson, an 
intelligent and pious gentleman, conscientiously devoted 
to the cause of civil and religious freedom. His heroic 
wife entered zealously into his views, although she was 
perfectly aware that they must be pursued at the sacrifice 
of personal indulgence and worldly splendour. 

She left her magnificent home, and cheerfully accom- 
panied her husband to the wilderness of New England. 
They arrived at Salem, then called Naumkeag, in the 
ship Arabella, April, 1630. 

Winthrop, in his Journal, praises the conduct of the 
ladies on board, at a time when they expected a battle 
with a fleet of Dunkirkers : He says, " It was much to 
see how cheerful and comfortable all the company ap- 
peared : not a woman or child that showed fear, though 
all did apprehend the danger to have been great." — ■ 
Luckily, their fortitude was not put to the severest proof: 
for on a near approach the vessels proved to be friends. 
14* 



242 GOOD WIVES. 

Mr. Isaac Johnson is generally considered the founder 
of Boston ; and though he was not long spared to the 
infant colony, no one will dispute his right to a title, 
which he gained by discreet counsels, active services, and 
generous funds. His wife cheered him onward in the 
arduous path of duty, never complaining of privations, or 
mourning over lost indulgences. 

Her excellent character and gentle manners gained 
universal respect and attachment; and in the records of 
those limes, her name is always mentioned with venera- 
tion. 

Her health began to fail soon after her arrival in New 
England; and she died in the beginning of September, 
1630. Her husband did not sorrow as one without hope, 
but as for one for whom this world affords no consolation. 
He endeavoured to perform the duties of his station, as 
faithfully, if not as cheerfully, as he had done. His 
whole deportment spoke Christian resignation, but it was 
plain to all who saw him, that his heart was ever with 
her who had loved him so well. 

God, in his mercy, soon restored them to each other ; 
Mr. Johnson survived Lady Arabella, little more than a 
month. " He was," says Winthrop, " a holy and wise 
man, and died in sweet peace." 



MRS. WINTHROP, 

WIFE OF HON. JOHN WINTHROP. 

Those who do not smile at all expressions of mutual 
affection in print, will find pleasure in the following 
correspondence between the first Governor of Massachu- 
setts and his excellent lady. We are so apt to regard our 
forefathers only as men stern and inflexible in their sense 
of duty, that it is indeed refreshing to soften the picture 
with the mild colouring of domestic happiness. These 
letters are peculiarly interesting; because the writers had 
been many years married, and had arrived at that sober 
meridian of life, when the worldly and the profligate 
would make us believe that love is considered as the 
mere idle dream of youth. 

[The following letter was probably written in 1624, or 1625.] 

" Most dear and loving Husband, — I cannot express 
my love to you as I desire, in these poor, lifeless lines ; 
but I do heartily wish you did see my heart, how true 
and faithful it is to you, and how much I do desire to be 
always with you, to enjoy the sweet comfort of your 
presence, and those helps from you in spiritual and tem- 
poral duties, which I am so unfit to perform without you. 
It makes me to see the want of you, and wish myself 
with you. But I desire we maybe guided by God in all 



244 GOOD WIVES 

our ways, who is able to direct us for the best ; and so I 
will wait upon him with patience, who is all sufficient 
for me. Desiring to be remembered in your prayers, I 
bid my good husband good night. Farewell. 

Your obedient wife, 

Margaret Winthkop." 

[In 1627, or 1628.] 
" My most sweet Husband, — How dearly welcome 
thy kind letter was to me, I am not able to express. The 
sweetness of it did much refresh me. What can be more 
pleasing to a wife, than to hear of the welfare of her best 
beloved, and how he is pleased with her poor endeavours ! 
I blush to hear myself commended, knowing my own 
wants. Bat it is your love that conceives the best, and 
makes all things seem better than they are. I wish 
that I may be always pleasing to thee, and that those 
comforts we have in each other may be daily increased, 
as far as they may be pleasing to God. I will use that 
speech to thee, that Abigail did to David ; ' I will be a 
servant to wash the feet of my lord.' I will do any 
service wherein I may please my good husband. I con- 
fess I cannot do enough for thee ; but thou art pleased to 
accept the will for the deed, and rest contented. 

" I have many reasons to make me love thee, whereof 
I will name two : first, because thou lovest God ; and 
secondly, because thou lovest me. If these two were 
wanting, all the rest would be eclipsed. But I must 
leave this discourse, and go about my household affairs. 
I am a bad housewife to be so long from them ; but I 
must needs borrow a little time to talk with thee, my 
sweet heart. I hope thy business draws to an end. It 
will be but two or three weeks before I see thee, though 



M R S . fl N T H It O P . 245 

ihey be long ones. God will bring us together in his 
good time ; for which I shall pray. 

Farewell, my good husband; the Lord keep thee. 
Your obedient wife, 

YlARGARET WlNTHROP." 

11 I did dine at Groton Hall yesterday ; they are in 

health, and remember their love. We did wish you there 

but that would not bring you, and I could not be merry 

without thee." 

[1629.] 

" My Good Wife, — Although I wrote to thee last week, 
yet, having so fit opportunity, I must needs write to thee 
again ; for I do esteem one little sweet, short letter of 
thine (such as the last was) to be well worthy two or 
three from me. 

I began this letter yesterday at two o'clock, thinking 
to have been large, but was so taken up by company and 
business, as I could get but hither by this morning. It 
grieves me that I have not liberty to make better expres- 
sion of my love to thee, who art more dear to me than 
all earthly things ; but I will endeavour that my prayers 
may supply the defect of my pen, which will be of use to 
us both, inasmuch as the favour and blessing of God is 
better than all things besides. 

" I know thou lookest for troubles here, and when one 
affliction is over, to meet with another; but remenber our 
Saviour tells us ' Be of good comfort, I have overcome 
the world." Therefore, my sweet wife, raise up thy 
heart, and be not dismayed at the crosses thou meetest 
with in family affairs, or otherwise : but still fly to him, 
who wiH take up thy burden for thee. Go thou on cheer- 
fully, in obedience to his holy will, in the course he hath 
set thee. Peace shall come. I commend thee and all 



246 GOOD WIVES. 

thine to the gracious protection and blessing of the 
Lord. 

" Farewell, my good wife. I kiss and love thee with 
the kindest affection, and rest, 

Thy faithful husband, 

John Winthrop." 

[1629.] 
" Most loving and good Husband, — I have received 
your letters. The true tokens of your love, and care of 
my good, now in your absence, as well as when you are 
present, make me think that saying false, ' out of sight, 
out of mind.' I am sure my heart and thoughts are 
always near you, to ' to do you good and not evil all the 
days of my life. 7 I rejoice in the expectation of our happy 
meeting ; for thy absence has been very long in my con- 
ceit, and thy presence much desired. Thy welcome is 
always ready ; make haste to entertain it. 

" And so I bid my good husband farewell, and commit 
him to the Lord, 

Your loving and obedient wife, 

Margaret Winthrop." 

[After having decided upon coming to New England, Mr. Win- 
throp writes thus, in 1629.] 

" I must now begin to prepare thee for our long part- 
ing, which grows very near. I know not how to deal 
with thee by arguments ; for if thou wert as wise as ever 
woman was, yet it must needs be a great trial to thee, 
and the greater, because I am so dear to thee. That 
which I must chiefly look at in thee, for a ground of 
contentment, is thy godliness. If now the Lord be thy 
God, thou must show it by trusting in him, and resigning 
thyself quietly to his good pleasure. The best course is 



MRS. \Y 1 N T II R P . 247 

to turn all our reasons and discourse into prayers ; for 
he only ran help, who is Lord of sea and land, and hath 
sole power over life and death. So I kiss my sweet 
wile, and rest, 

Thy faithful husband, 

Jo. Winthrop." 

[February 14, 1620.] 
11 My sweet wife, — The opportunity of so fit a mes- 
senger, and my deep engagement of affection to thee, 
makes me write at this time, though I hope to follow 
soon after. The Lord our God hath oft brought us to- 
gether with comfort, when we have been long absent ; 
and, if it be good for us, he will do so still. When I was 
in Ireland, he brought us together again. When I was 
sick here at London, he restored us together again. How 
many dangers near death hast thou been in thyself! and 
yet the Lord hath granted me to enjoy thee still. If he 
did not watch over us, we need not go over sea to seek 
death, or misery ; we should meet it at every step ; in 
every journey. And is not he a God abroad as well as 
at home ? Is not his power and providence the same in 
New England that it hath been in Old England ? 

" My good wife, trust in the Lord. He will be better 
to thee than any husband, and will restore thee thy hus- 
band with advantage. I bless thee and ours, and rest, 
Thine ever, Jo. Winthrop." 

" Thou must be my Valentine, for none hath challeng- 
ed me."* 

" My most dear husband, — I should not now omit any 
opportunity of writing to thee, considering I shall not 
* The writer was past forty years old. 



248 GOOD WIVES. 

long have thee to write unto. But, by reason of my un- 
fitness at this time, I must entreat thee to accept of a few 
lines from me, and not impute it to any want of love, 
or neglect of duty to thee, to whom I owe more than I 
ever shall be able to express. 

" My request now shall be to the Lord to prosper thee 
in thy voyage, and enable thee and fit thee for it, and 
give all graces and gifts for such employments as he shall 
call thee to. I trust God will once more bring us togeth- 
er before you go, that we may see each other with glad- 
ness, and take a solemn leave, till we, through the good- 
ness of our God, shall meet in New England, which will 
be a joyful day to us. With my best wishes to God for 
thy health and welfare, I take my leave and rest, thy 
faithful, obedient wife, Margaret Winthrop." 

March, 1629. 
" Mine own dear Heart, — I must confess thou hast 
overcome me with thy exceeding great love, and those 
abundant expressions of it in thy sweet letters, which sa- 
vour of more than an ordinary spirit of love and piety. 
Blessed be the Lord our God, that gives strength and 
comfort to thee to undergo this great trial, which I must 
confess, would be too heavy for thee, if the Lord did not 
put under his hand in so gracious a measure. Let this 
experience of his faithfulness to thee in this first trial, be 
a ground to establish thy heart to believe and expect his 
help in all that may follow. It grieveth me much, that I 
want time and freedom of mind to discourse with thee, 
my faithful yokefellow, in those things which thy sweet 
letters offer me so plentiful occasion for. I beseech the 
Lord, I may have liberty to supply it, ere I depart ; for I 
cannot thus leave thee. # # # 



MRS. WIRTHBOF. 249 

11 Mine only best beloved, I beseech the good Lord to 
tgin care of thee and thine ; to seal up his loving kind- 
i thy BOul ; to fill thee with the sweet comfort of 
his presence, that may uphold thee in this time of trial ; 
and grant that we may see the faces of each other again 
in the time expected. So. loving thee truly, and tender 
of thy welfare, studying to bestow thee safe, where I 
may have thee again, I leave thee in the arms of our 
t Saviour* Ewr thine, 

Jo. WlNTHROP." 

[From the Arabella, riding at the Cowes, he thus writes.] 

March 28th, 1630. 

k - My faithful and dear wife. — And now I must 
once again take my farewell of thee in Old England. 
It go ill very near my heart to leave thee. I know to 
whom I have committed thee ; even to him who loves 
thee much better than any husband can, who, if it be for 
his glory, will bring us together again with peace and 
comfort. Oh, how it refresheth my heart, to think, that 
I shall yet again see thy sweet face in the land of the 
living ; — that lovely countenance, that I have so much 
delighted in, and beheld with so great content ! 

" I hope the course we have agreed upon will be some 
ease to us both. Mondays and Fridays, at five of the 
clock at night, we shall meet in spirit till we meet in per- 
son. Yet if all these hopes should fail, blessed be our 
God, we are assured that we shall meet one day, in a 
better condition. Let that stay and comfort thy heart. 
Commend my blessing to my son John. Tell him 
I have committed thee and thine to him. Labour to draw 
him yet nearer to God, and he will be the surer staff of 
comfort to thee. 

Thine wheresoever, Jo. Winthrop. 



250 GOOD WIVES. 

[While the vessel was riding before the Isle of Wight, he again 
writes :] 

"My love, my joy, my faithful one, — I suppose 
thou didst not expect to have any more letters from me 
till the return of our ships ; but so is the good pleasure 
of God, that the winds should not serve yet to carry us 
hence. I desire to resign myself wholly to his gracious 
disposing. Oh, that I had a heart so to do, and to trust 
perfectly in him for his assistance in all our ways. 

" This is the third letter I have written to thee since I 
came to Hampton, in requital of those two I received 
from thee, which I do often read with much delight, ap- 
prehending so much love and sweet affection in them, as 
I am never satisfied with reading, nor can read them 
without tears. Oh, my dear heart, I ever held thee in 
high esteem, as thy love and goodness hath well deserved ; 
but (if it be possible) I shall yet prize thy virtue at a 
greater rate, and long more to enjoy thy sweet society 
than ever before. I am sure thou art not short of me in 
this wish. Let us pray hard, and pray in faith, and our 
God, in his good time, will accomplish our desire. Oh, 
how loth I am to bid thee farewell ! but, since it must be, 
farewell, my sweet love, farewell. I take thee and my 
dear children in mine arms, and kiss and embrace you 
all, and so leave you with my God. 

Thy faithful husband, Jo. Winthrop." 

After Mr. Winthrop arrived in New England, his let- 
ters to his wife breathe the same affectionate spirit, and 
earnest wish for her society. 

She followed her husband in about a year. In a letter 
to her son, announcing her approaching departure from 
England, she writes : " Mr. Wilson is now in London. 
He cannot yet persuade his wife to go, for all he hath 



MRS. WINTHROP. 253 

taken this pains to conic and fetch her. I marvel wha 
mettle she is made of." 

Q ►vernor Winthropand his lady met in safety, and 
lived long to bless the colony to whoso interests they had 
►ted tin in- : 

In manners, they dignified, bat condescending; 

and in character truly uprighl and benevolent. Being 
once informed that a pool man stole his wood, the Gover- 
nor replied in seeming anger, that he would soon cure 
him of Stealing, When the man appeared, he said, 
" Friend, It is a severe winter, and I hear you are poor. 
Help yourself from my pile till the winter is over." He 
afterwards said to his informer, " Have I not put a stop 
to his stealing ?" 

Governor Winthrop was elected again and again, until 
worn out with toils, he died in the sixty-third year of his 
age, March, 1649. Though rich when he came to this 
country, he died poor. 

It is unnecessary here to pay a tribute to his exalted 
character ; his name adorns the history with which it is 
so honourably associated. 



MADAME EEISKE. 

WIFE OF JOHN JAMES REISKE. 

J. J. Reiske, a very distinguished German philolo- 
gist, was born at Zorbig, a small village in Saxony, in 
1716. This colossus of languages was the son of a tan- 
ner, who could not afford to do much for his education. 
He studied by himself, without method, but with abun- 
dance of zeal. His talents and learning soon became 
known, and obtained for him an easy access to valuable 
libraries ; but a rash temper, and blunt independence of 
manner, embroiled him in continual quarrels, and kept 
him poor ; so poor, that he knew not sometimes where 
to obtain bread. But although, daring his lifetime, 
Reiske might have said, with the scholar in the Old 
Drama, — " I know not what good my learning doth me, 
except that I can call myself a beggar both in Greek and 
Latin' 1 — yet he was proudly conscious that permanent 
fame would be his sure inheritance ; and his hopes have 
not been disappointed. It may seem strange that a man 
so remarkably industrious, and possessing such a vast 
fund of erudition, should ever have been in need. Bat 
in the first place, he wrote books which few people in the 
world wished to buy, and still fewer knew how to appre- 
ciate ; secondly, his aged mother was supported out of 
his hard earnings ; the third, and perhaps the strongest 
reason of all, was that he always preferred the claims 
of the mind to those of the body, — he could not refrain 



M M E . REISKE. 253 

from buying an Arabic MS. even when it left him noth- 
ing to purchase a dinner. 

In 1753 fortune became weary of persecuting this 
laborious student; he obtained a moderate, but certain 
income, by being appointed rector of the school of St. 
Nicholas. 

In 17GS, he married Earncstine Christiana Miiller, a 
virtuous, and intelligent lady, of highly respectable 
family. He saw her with her brother at Leipsic, in 1755. 
Her modeGty, amiability, and love of learned men, made 
a deep impression on his heart ; and he was so fortunate 
as to inspire a reciprocal attachment. Various obstacles 
delayed their union, and interrupted their epistolary cor- 
respondence. Perhaps the story will be best told, in a 
translation of his own words : " About the time that the 
first part of my German Demosthenes was published, an 
unexpected, happy incident occurred ; it was to solicit 
the heart and hand of my present beloved wife. The 
negotiation was conducted by letters. Personal presence 
was unnecessary, for we had known each other nine 
years. Adverse accidents, and the calamities of war, 
had interrupted our intercourse, and brought me, as I 
thought, to the fixed resolution never to marry. But as 
unhoped-for unions do come to pass, I believed that the 
hand of God might be seen in these things. We both 
learned, at the same time, that we had been mistaken 
concerning each other, for each of us supposed that the 
other had been married ; our old affection was once more 
awakened, and I renounced my resolution of remaining 
single. God has decreed, as a compensation for my past 
griefs, that I should at last be blessed in a happy marriage. 

" I endeavour to conduct as a true friend toward my 
wife, and to make her destiny as agreeable as I can, after 
15 



254 



GOOD WIVE S. 



the many crosses she has endured for our union's sake. 
Her deportment towards me fills me with thankful happi- 
ness, for which I praise our Creator ; I bestow this com- 
mendation for the best reasons, and from the sincere 
conviction of my heart. 

" May God, who brought us together, in a manner sin- 
gular and unexpected, still preserve our lives, (as long as 
shall suit his wisdom) in undisturbed harmony, constant 
health, true love, perfect fidelity to each other, and un- 
ceasing endeavours to promote our mutual happiness ; 
that our pilgrimage through this wearisome world may 
be as quiet and joyful as human imperfection will admit." 

Eeiske affixed his wife's portrait to his learned and ex- 
cellent edition of the Greek Orators. In the preface to 
his first volume, he speaks with much gratitude and 
affection, of the assistance she rendered him in comparing 
the numerous editions and manuscripts, which he used 
to correct the text. 

" She is," says he, "a modest and frugal woman : she 
loves me, and my literary employments, and is an indus- 
trious and skilful assistant. Induced by affection for me, 
she applied herself to the study of Greek and Latin under 
my tuition. She knew neither of these languages when 
we were married ; but she was soon able to lighten the 
multifarious and very severe labours to be performed in 
this undertaking. The Aldine and Pauline editions she 
alone compared ; also the fourth Augustine edition. As 
I had taught her the Erasmian pronunciation, she read 
first to me the Morellian copy, while I read those in 
manuscript. She laboured unweariedly in arranging, 
correcting, and preparing my confused copy for the press. 
As I deeply feel, and publicly express, my gratitude for 
her aid, so I trust that present and future generations may 
hold her name in honoured remembrance," 



M M B . i E I • I E . 255 

Toward the conclusion of the same preface, he again 
recurs to this subject. He observes: " Although I add 
or all nething, aa each day suggests, the greater 

pari of my work is now prepared and distinctly arranged. 
If fate should remove m lay, the web .could be filled 

up; and my wife would not permit my reputation to be 
impaired, 01 the expectations of subscribers to be disap- 
pointed. Eighteen months bad elapsed, after my pro- 
spectus was issued, when, beginning to despair of suc- 
cess, I determined to return the money advanced by 
subscribers ; there were scarcely half a dozen of them. 
But my wife interceded. She was aware that her own 
comforts would be diminished, or greatly endangered, by 
my hazardous undertaking; yet she exhorted me to fulfil 
my duty to the republic of letters, and to hope better 
things than I was wont to do from the liberality of the 
age ; bidding me trust in God, who knew how to smooth 
the roughest path, and to bring unlooked for succour in 
the time of need. Thus urged, I ventured to risk all. 
I purchased manuscripts, hired a printer, and put my 
work in press. Meantime a few more subscribers came 
in ; but what they contributed was small indeed compared 
with the sum I advanced from my own pocket." 

The following account is given by Mrs. Reiske, in a 
note to the memoirs : " When the work went to the press, 
only twenty dollars of the subscription money had come 
in. The good man was quite struck down with this, and 
seemed to have thrown away all hope. His grief went 
to my soul. I comforted him as well as I could. I per- 
suaded him to sell my jewels ; to which he at last agreed, 
after I had convinced him that a few shining stones were 
not necessary to my happiness." 

It is evident that the animadversions on the Greek 



256 



GOOD WIVE S 



Orators was Reiske's favourite work. Other things he 
did, because he was obliged to do them for the booksellers ; 
a kind of literary employment, which binds down many 
an intellectual Gulliver, with the pitiful Lilliputian threads 
of immediate profit. Oh, why, why is it that genius 
should so often be compelled to sell its glorious birthright 
of freedom for a daily mess of pottage ! 

The learned enthusiast thus speaks of his darling pro- 
ject : " I printed rive volumes, which cost me one thou- 
sand dollars, of which I have never seen more than one 
hundred again. I have, however, enough for five vol- 
umes more ; and I should go quietly out of the world, if 
I could once see them printed. They are flos ingenii 
mei ; (supposing it to be allowed that my genius has any 
flowers) and sure I am, that little as their worth is now 
known, the time will come when justice will be done 
them. Should they come out in my lifetime, it will pay 
me for all my trouble ; if they should not, an ever-waking 
God will take care that no impious hand seizes on my 
work, and makes it his own. Perhaps some honourable, 
God-fearing man, may hereafter arise, who will publish 
them unadulterated to my posthumous fame, and for the 
good of literature. Such is my wish — such are my pray- 
ers to God — and he will hear those prayers." 

In January, 1770, he writes : " Children I have none ; 
but my manuscripts, my fatherless blue coats, are my 
children. Of all earthly things they are nearest to my 
heart. Will there be found an honest, affectionate heart, 
to take care of them after my death ? I have done all I 
could ; and as long as I live I w\\\ not cease doing all I 
can to help them forward. 

" God will take care of my good wife. Her excellent 
qualities and attainments are a sufficient security that she 



MME. RIESKE. 257 

will be provided for. I have taken all the care of her 
well-being that it was possible for me to do." 

Speaking of this pa-sage in his life, Mrs. Reiske ob- 

i Tea : " The melancholy, to which he had been sub- 
ject from a child, here breaks out again. As the work 
tfold very ill, particularly toward the end of his life, the 
disorder went on increasing, and in the end did its work." 

It is gratifying to know that wishes which lay so near 
the scholar's heart were realized : his beloved manu- 

•ipta wore published after his death. 

He departed this life on the 14th of August, 1774. 

On his death-bed he spoke of his learned works as 
mere trifles ; saying his only hope was in the conscious- 
ness of having walked uprightly before God. 

Reiske wrote his own memoirs with a remarkable de- 
gree of candour and simplicitity ; I believe no other 
human being ever spoke of himself with such perfect 
impartiality. Through all his faults, and all his eccen- 
tricities, there runs such a rich vein of integrity, gene- 
rosity, frankness, and perfect kindness of heart, that we. 
are willing to believe all his wife's testimony in his 
favour. She completed his unfinished memoirs, in a 
manner which proves strong attachment for him, and 
great respect for his memory. She says : " The highest 
degree of rectitude, which laid open every fold of his 
heart — which never excused in himself what he would 
not have excused in his greatest enemy — which, satisfied 
of the wickedness of mankind, avoided their falsehood ; 
yet wished them every good, and did them every good in 
his power — such was the character of my friend. He ! 
often blamed himself in cases where he deserved no ' 
blame, and spoke feelingly of his own unworthiness. 

" I shall be forgiven for letting all remain, that the 
15* 



258 GOOD WIVES. 

good man has written in my praise. These testimonies 
of his kindness were so dear to me, that I could not strike 
them out." 

JReiske provided for her comfort, as far as he was able, 
by subscribing to the widow's fund, soon after their mar- 
riage. She was highly respected, and she richly de- 
served it. Some of her husband's works, published after 
his decease, were dedicated to her. 

She died of apoplexy, at Kemberg, her native place, in 
July, 1798, aged sixty-three. 



ARRIA, 

WIFE OF PCETUS. 

Pcetus, a senator of Padua, in the reign of Claudius, 
being accused of treason, escaped from Rome, accompa- 
nied by his wife, who was devotedly attached to him. 
Their place of retreat was discovered, and ruin seemed 
inevitable. Arria met this painful crisis with firmness ; 
only entreating that she might be permitted to share her 
husband's fate. It was not until this request was refused, 
that she gave way to tears. When the officers of justice 
absolutely forbade her to accompany Pcetus, and when 
she found all her efforts to excite compassion entirely 
fruitless, then indeed her misery knew no bounds. But 
her resolution did not forsake her. She offered a large 
sum of money to the owners of a fishing-boat, if they 
would take her on board and follow the vessel that con- 
tained her husband. Tempted by the promised reward, 
the fishermen consented to her proposition, and conveyed 
her safely to Rome. The senate, admiring her energy 
and strong affection, consented that she should be her 
husband's companion in prison. Here she gave way to 
no useless expressions of sorrow, but exerted herself to 
the utmost to support his spirits, and enliven his solitude, 
by her own cheerful fortitude. 

When, at last, no hope of pardon remained, she urged 
him to avoid the ignominy of public execution by sui- 
cide. The advice was in accordance with the blind 



260 GOOD WIVES. 

courage of those ancient times, when the light of the 
Gospel was just dawning, and men had not learned the 
duty of perfect resignation to the will of God ; but Pcetus, 
reluctant to part from her he loved, and perhaps still 
clinging to some faint hope of deliverance, resisted her 
entreaties. Finding her arguments ineffectual, she drew 
a dagger from her robe, and plunged it in her heart ; 
then offering the weapon to her husband, with a gentle 
smile, she said, " It pains not, my Poetus." 

Existence had now no value for the unhappy man — 
with one desperate stroke his spirit followed hers. 



EPONINA, 

WIFE OF JULIUS SABINUS. 

'J 

Julius Sabinus, a nobleman of Gaul, revolted from 
Vespasian, and allowed the troops to address him as Em- 
peror. Being defeated in his bold undertaking, he set 
fire to his house, and caused the report to be spread that 
he had perished in the flames. After this, he hid him- 
self in a large cavern of white marble and granite, about 
fifteen miles from Rome. Two of his freedmen were 
intrusted with the secret : and to their kind attentions the 
fugitive was for some time indebted for the most common 
necessaries of life. Eponina, believing her husband was 
dead, gave herself up to most heart-rending grief. When 
the freedmen told Sabinus she had passed three days and 
three nights without food, he authorized them to inform 
her that he yet lived. These joyful tidings restored her 
at once to hope and happiness. She could hardly sum- 
mon sufficient prudence to wait for the approach of night, 
before she set off for the cavern. The delight which her 
husband felt at seeing her, was mingled with anxiety 
and fear. He strenuously resisted her wish to remain 
with him in the cavern, on the ground that her absence 
from home would lead to detection, and involve them in 
ruin. This argument had its effect ; Eponina contented 
herself with visiting him privately, and providing every- 
thing she could for his comfort and amusement. But as 
time passed on, and the fate of Sabinus seemed to be for- 



262 GOOD WIVES 

gotten, she acted with less caution ; often venturing to 
stay with him several months, under the pretence of vis- 
iting her relations. Always affectionate and cheerful, 
she enlivened her husband's dreary abode, and made him 
almost contented with his lot. 

Twin children were born to them in the cavern; and 
the innocent prattle of these little ones was a new source 
of pleasure. Thus nine years past away, and their fears 
had settled into quiet security. But alas, the frequent 
absence of Eponina was observed by her husband's ene- 
mies, and her footsteps were traced to the cavern. Sabi- 
nus was dragged from his long concealment, and carried 
before the enraged emperor. His wife followed, in a 
state bordering on despair. She fell at Vespasian's feet, 
with her children, and begged for mercy, in a tone in- 
spired by deep love and bitter agony ; and the little twins, 
affected by their mother's sorrow, joined in her supplica- 
tions. The people could not refrain from tears at this 
heart-stirring scene ; and even the emperor turned away 
his face to conceal his emotions. Then arose the loud 
voice of the multitude, " Pardon ! Great Caesar ! Pardon 
this wretched and faithful pair !" 

Vespasian was angry at this public compassion toward 
a rebel, and he ordered Sabinus and his wife to be imme- 
diately beheaded. When Eponina found there was no 
hope of mercy, she burst into a strain of impassioned elo- 
quence. " Know, Vespasian," she exclaimed, " that in 
fulfilling my duy, and prolonging the days of your vic- 
tim, I have enjoyed, in that dark cavern, years of Jhappi- 
ness, which you, upon your splendid throne, will never 
know." 

The only favour she could obtain, was leave to send 
her poor children a lock of their father's hair, her own 



E P N I N A . 263 

picture, and some papers giving an account of their love 
and their misfortunes. 

After the death of their parents, the orphans were con- 
fined in, a tower on the borders of the Tiber. The affec- 
tionate little ones refused all consolation, and absolutely 
pined away with grief. Day and night they moaned for 
their father and mother, and one morning they were 
found dead in each other's arms. 

This affecting story has furnished a subject to many 
tragic poets. A painting representing the interview with 
Vespasian, received a prize from the National Institute 
of France. 






MADAME LAFAYETTE, 

WIFE OF GENERAL LAFAYETTE. 

When La Fayette was imprisoned at Olmutz, in 1793, 
by the Austrian government, he was informed that he 
would never again see anything but the four walls of his 
cell. Even the jailers were forbidden to mention his 
name, and in the government despatches he was signified 
merely by a number. No visiters could gain access to 
him; no newspapers were allowed; and it was impossi- 
ble for him to gain the least information concerning the 
fate of his family. 

His wife, for a long time uncertain of his existence, 
was immured in the prisons of Paris, daily expecting to 
be led to the scaffold, where the greater part of her family 
had already suffered. During this alarming crisis, she 
spent much of her time in prayer. The death of Robes- 
pierre saved her ; but she did not regain her liberty for 
some time after. The first use she made of her freedom 
was to set off for Vienna, with an American passport, 
and under a feigned name. 

Here she succeeded in exciting the compassion of 
Prince de Rossenberg, by whose means she obtained an 
audience with the Emperor. She pleaded strongly for 
the release of her husband on the grounds of common 
justice and humanity, and urged her strong desire to see 
him restored to his family. The emperor said it was out 
of his power to grant her request, but he was willing she 



MMS. LAFAYETTE. 265 

and her two daughters, (then about twelve and fifteen 
years of age,) should enliven the prisoner by taking up 
their abode with him. This indulgence was gratefully 
pted, and the long-separated friends were restored to 
each other. 

Madame La Fayette was deeply affected at the ema- 
ciated figure and pale countenance of her husband. She 
found him suffering under annoyances much worse than 
sly had feared. 

She wished to write to the Emperor ; but this was 
refused. She made applications for redress in other 
quarters, but received no answer, except, " Madame La 
Fayette has submitted to share the captivity of her hus- 
band. It is her own choice." 

At length, her health, already impaired by sixteen 
months' imprisonment in Paris, began to give way. She 
solicited permission to go to Vienna, to breathe pure air, 
and consult a physician. During two months she re- 
ceived no reply ; but, at last, she was informed that the 
emperor permitted her to go out, upon condition that she 
never returned to the prison. 

Being desired to signify her choice in writing, she 
wrote as follows. 

" I considered it a duty to my family and friends to 
desire the assistance necessary for my health ; but they 
well know it cannot be accepted by me at the price 
attached to it. I cannot forget that while we were on 
the point of perishing, myself by the tyranny of Robes- 
pierre, and my husband by the physical and moral suf- 
ferings of captivity, I was not permitted to obtain any 
intelligence of him, nor to acquaint him that his children 
and myself were yet alive ; and I shall not expose my- 
self to the horrors of another separation. Whatever then 
may be the state of my health, and the inconveniences of 



266 GOOD WIVES. 

this abode for my daughters, we will gratefully avail our- 
selves of his Imperial Majesty's generosity, in permitting 
us to partake this captivity in all its circumstances." 

After this, Madame La Fayette, fearful of being sepa- 
rated from her husband, refrained from making any 
complaint ; although the air of the prison was so foetid, 
that the soldiers, who brought food, covered their faces 
when they opened the door. 

The excellent man to whom our country owes so much, 
continued at Olmutz four years. 

The unsuccessful efforts to effect his escape, made by 
Henry Bollman, a young German, and Francis Huger, a 
South Carolinian, (whose father had first received Lafay- 
ette when he came to the United States) are too univer- 
sally known to be repeated here. Joseph Russell, Esq., 
of Boston, was in Paris during the reign of Robespierre, 
and by his aid, the son, George Washington Lafayette, 
came to America, where he remained till his family were 
in safety. 

After much equivocation and delay, the intervention of 
General Bonaparte released the prisoners from Austrian 
power. Lafayette resided in Hamburg and Holstein for 
a time, and then returned to France, after an absence of 
eight years. 

His wife belonged to the noble family of Noailles. Her 
character was patient, gentle, and affectionate; and she 
was, of course, much beloved by her husband and chil- 
dren. 

During her various imprisonments, surrounded by an 
accumulation of horrors, her health received a shock, 
from which it never recovered. She died in 1807. 



COUNTE SS SEGUR. 

Count Segctr, the elder, pays the following tribute to 
the memory of his wife : " What comfort and support 
she was to me under my greatest calamities ! She was 
my secretary, and wrote the whole of my Universal His- 
tory under my dictation ; for I was then almost blind. 
There was not a single disagreement between us upon 
subjects of literature and politics, not the slightest domes- 
tic cloud, not even a difference of opinion concerning the 
details of household management. 

" The loss of such a friend, such a companion, such 
an assistant, is not to be estimated — It could not be en- 
dured if much of life were left for vain regrets. " 



MADAME LAVALETTE, 

WIFE OF MARIE CHAMANS LAVALETTE. 

Marriages made by the will of a third person are 
not usually happy ; for people rarely love those whom 
their relatives are determined they shall love. Lavalette 
seems to have been an exception to this general rule. 
Bonaparte, wishing to reward the bravery of his aid-de- 
camp, and being at that time somewhat restricted in his 
power, resolved that he should marry a niece of Jose- 
phine. " I cannot make you a major," said he, " I must 
therefore give you a wife. You shall marry Emilie 
Beauharnais. She is very handsome, and well educated." 

Lavalette objected that he had no fortune — that he was 
going immediately to Africa — that he might be killed — 
that perhaps the young lady would not fancy him — But 
the conqueror of Italy was not in the habit of supposing 
the opinions and feelings of others could possibly be 
obstructions in the way of his wishes. " Killed, you 
certainly may be," he replied ; " but she will ,then be 
the widow of one of my officers — she will have a pen- 
sion — and may marry again advantageously. The wed- 
ding shall take place in eight days. I will allow you a 
fortnight for the honey-moon. You must then come and 
join us at Toulon. Come T come, the thing is all settled. 
Tell the coachman to drive home." 

Lavalette smiled to see how readily he was disposed 
of, apparently upon the supposition that he had no right 



INI ME. LAVALETTE 



269 



to feci any interest in the matter. Foreigners accuse us 
of dancing as if we did it by act of the legislature; but 
this marrying per order is a more serious affair. 

Lavalette agreed to visit the young lady, mentally 
reserving a degree of freedom, in case the union should 
not he mutually agreeable. The following is his own 
oanf of the ew. 

M In the evening 1 wont to see Madame Bonaparte. 
She knew what was going forward, and was kind enough 
to show some satisfaction, and call me her nephew. 
4 To-morrow,* she said, ' we shall go to St. Germains — I 
will introduce you to my niece : you will be delighted 
with her — she is a charming girl.' Accordingly, next 
day, the Gen. Madame Bonaparte, Eugene, and I, went 
in an op^n carriage to St. Germains, and stopped at 
Madame Campan's. The visit was a great event at the 
boarding-school ; all the young girls were at the windows, 
in the parlours, or in the court-yard, for they had obtained 
a holiday. We soon entered the gardens. Among the 
forty young ladies I anxiously sought for her who was 
to be my wife. Her cousin, Hortense, led her to us, that 
she might salute the General and embrace her aunt. She 
was, in truth, the prettiest of them all. Her stature was 
tall, and most gracefully elegant, her features were charm- 
ing, and the glow of her beautiful complexion was height- 
ened by her confusion. Her bashfulness was so great, 
that the General could not help laughing at her, but he 
went no further. It was decided that we should break- 
fast in the garden. In the meantime I felt extremely 
uneasy. Would she like me ? Would she obey without 
reluctance ? This abrupt marriage, and this speedy de- 
parture grieved me. When we got up and the circle was 
broken, I begged Eugene to conduct his cousin into a 
16 



270 GOOD WIVES. 

solitary walk. I joined them, and he left us ; I then 
entered on the delicate subject. I made no secret of my 
birth, or of my want of fortune ; and added — ' I possess 
nothing in the world but my sword, and the good will of 
the General — and I must leave you in a fortnight. Open 
your heart to me. I feel disposed to love you with all 
my soul — but that is not sufficient. If this marriage 
does not please you, repose a full confidence in me ; it 
will not be difficult to find a pretext to break it off — I 
shall depart : you will not be tormented, for I will keep 
your secret.' While I was speaking, she kept her eyes 
fixed on the ground ; her only answer was a smile, and 
she gave me the nosegay she held in her hand ; I em- 
braced her. We returned slowly to the company, and 
eight days afterwards went to the municipality. The 
following day, a poor priest, who had not taken the oaths, 
married us in a small convent of the Conception, in the 
Rue St. Honore. This was in some manner forbidden, 
but Emilie set a great importance on that point: her 
piety was gentle and sincere.." 

Immediately after the marriage, Count Lavalette left 
his bride, in order to join the expedition to Egypt. 

At the end of eighteen months he returned ; and when 
he received orders again to depart for Saxony, he took 
Madame Lavalette with him. The people of North Ger- 
many had great prejudices against Frenchwomen ; and 
were therefore surprised when they saw a young and 
beautiful lady so modestly dressed, and timid even to 
bashfulness. Daring her residence at the Court of Ber- 
lin she excited great admiration. 

In France, honours were of course heaped upon them 
during the prosperity of Bonaparte. Grateful for these 
favours, and warmly attached to the Emperor's person, 



M ME. LAV ALETTE. 271 

Count Lavalclte welcomed Napoleon on his return from 
Elba. In the counter revolution, which immediately 
ensued, this became a crime ; and he was imprisoned. 

The state of Madame Lavalette's health made this 
affliction peculiarly distressing; she was expressly for- 
bi Iden to visit her basband. A few months after he was 
arras we birth to a little son, which died in a 

few hours. The reverse of fortune that had fallen upon 
all her friends, and the sad fate of her husband, produced 
such a state of nervous excitement, that she wept for her 
lost infant with delirious and inconsolable grief. 

She was scarcely restored to a tolerable degree of 

raininess, when it became necessary to inform her that 

ace of death had been passed upon Lavalette. This 

aroused all her energy. Their first meeting in prison 

'oo much for her ; but she recovered herself 

sufficiently to consult on all possible means of saving him. 

For il weeks her petitions to the king and Duch- 

ess D'Angouleme were incessant. When driven from 
one door of the palace, she flew to another ; and when 
again repulsed, she sat down on the stone steps in the court- 
yard, pale and weary, watching for some means to gain 
admission. Those, who passed by, knew her and pitied 
her ; but they did not dare to show their commiseration. 

At last, it became too evident that there was no hope 
of royal mercy ; only forty-eight hours remained between 
the prisoner and death. His wife came to make her 
accustomed daily visit. When they were alone, she said, 
" I have formed a plan of escape, and provided a place 
of refuge for you. At eight o'clock to-morrow evening, 
you must go out in my dress ; I will remain. You shall 
step into my sedan chair. At the corner of the Rue de 
St. Peres you will find M. Baudus with a cabriolet ; he 



272 GOOD WIVES. 

will guide you to a retreat where you will be safe till you 
can leave France." 

Lavalette thought the scheme wild and hazardous ; but 
she silenced all objections by saying, " You must not 
reject my plan. If you die, I die. I know it will suc- 
ceed. I feel that God supports me." 

The next day she was again at the prison. " Our 
project must be executed to-night," said she ; " for to- 
morrow, alas, it will be too late. Ever since I left you, 
I have been making arrangements to prevent any disaster. 
Keep up your spirits, for you will need them. As for 
me, I feel that I have courage for four and twenty hours, 
and not a moment longer ; for I am exhausted with fa- 
tigue." 

The eventful hour came. Madame Lavalette with her 
young daughter Josephine, paid what was supposed to be 
a farewell visit to the prisoner. The disguise was as- 
sumed. Madame Lavalette was half an inch taller than 
her husband ; but in female attire he appeared about her 
height. She charged him to hold his handkerchief to 
his eyes, to walk slowly and wearily, as she had been 
accustomed to do, — to stoop at the door, to avoid breaking 
the plumes of his bonnet, which might lead to delay and 
detection, — &c, &c. The trying moment came for them 
to part. " Now God's will be done, my dear," she said. 
" Keep very calm. Let me feel your pulse. Very well. 
Feel of mine. Does it indicate the slightest emotion ?" 

Poor woman ! It throbbed high with fever ; but she 
was unconscious of it. 

" We must not give way to our feelings," she added; 
" for that will ruin all." Lavalette put his marriage- ring 
on her finger, under the pretence that it might lead to 
detection, but in reality because he feared he should never 
see her more. 



M M E . LAVALETTE. 273 

The turnkey was heard, and they exchanged looks, 
without daring to embrace. Madame Lavalette retired 
behind a screen, and her husband went out. He was 
obliged to pass through a passage, two rooms, and a court, 
under the eyes of seven turnkeys and twenty soldiers. 
These perils were all passed in safety ; but two minutes 
elapsed before the sedan-chair arrived ; but those two 
minutes seemed like eternity. Fortunately, the eabrioiet 
was brought nearer to the prison than had been at first 
intended J for the trick was discovered before many 
minutes. Lavalette had scarcely passed the outer door 
of the prison when the jailer went to examine his room ; 
hearing a noise behind the screen, he went away : but 
in five minutes he returned, and took a fancy to peep 
behind the screen. Madame Lavalette tried to hold him 
by the coat, but he tore himself away so violently that he 
left a part of it in her hand. A hue and cry was imme- 
diately raised. 

The sedan chair was easily overtaken, but it contained 
only Josephine Lavalette. Her father, in the meantime, 
was safely concealed in a garret, where he could hear 
the criers pronouncing heavy penalties upon any one 
who harboured him. After remaining in this conceal- 
ment about twenty days, he at last, by the assistance of 
Sir Robert Wilson, escaped to Belgium, in the disguise 
of an English officer. On his way, he passed by his 
own scaffold, and through the midst of soldiers, who were 
on the alert to seize him. 

As the school, where Josephine was placed, was under 
the protection of the Duchess D'Angouleme, the poor 
child experienced a good deal of persecution for her part 
in this affair ; and several of the parents threatened to 
take away their children if she were suffered to remain. 
So powerful and so unprincipled is self-interest ! 



274 GOOD WIVES. 

The populace, always rejoicing in the defeat of the 
Bourbons, did not conceal their delight. Madame La- 
valette was lauded to the skies. The market-women of 
Paris talked of her continually ; and at the theatre the 
slightest allusions were received with enthusiasm. 

But she, poor lady, was in hands little inclined to deal 
mercifully. She remained in prison six weeks, treated 
with great severity, loaded with abuse, and terrified by 
the assurance that her husband would be immediately 
re-taken. No letter was allowed to cross the threshold 
nor could her friends find any means to communicate 
with her. At every noise, she imagined they were bring- 
ing the prisoner back. Five and twenty days and nights 
she passed without sleep. This feverish anxiety, acting 
upon health already enfeebled, produced insanity, from 
which she suffered more or less during twelve years. 

Lavalette left France in January, 1816 ; in 1822 Louis 
18th granted him letters of pardon, and he returned to 
his native country. A host of friends welcomed him ; 
but his excellent and devoted wife did not know him, 
whom she had sacrificed her reason to save ! 

This blow almost overwhelmed her husband with des- 
pair. He gave up the world, and lived in perfect soli- 
tude, devoting his whole time and attention to her. 

Madame Lavalette had intervals of rationality, during 
which she was perfectly conscious of her liability to men- 
tal derangement. This made her urge an early marriage 
for her daughter ; and Josephine was united to a man of 
worth and talent, some time before her father returned. 

The soothing attentions and unremitting kindness of a 
grateful husband produced a salutary effect upon the in- 
valid. 

Lavalette closes his memoirs by saying : " A deep me- 






■ MB. LAVALETTE. 275 

lancholy frequently throws her into fits of abstraction ; 
but she ia always equally mild, amiable, and good. We 
our Bummers in a retired country house, where she 
seemd to enjoy herself." 

If' watchful love could repay the debt he owed, it was 
amply repaid. To the day of his death he cherished her 
oe anxious care a mother bestows upon her 
ring babe. 



COUNTESS OF NITHSDALE. 

The Earl of Nithsdale was condemned to be beheaded 
for his efforts to place the Pretender on the British throne, 
in 1711. He would unquestionably have shared the fate 
of the Earl of Derwent, had he not been rescued by the 
affection and ingenuity of his wife. 

The day before his intended execution she distributed 
money very freely among the jailers, who were of course 
disposed to be as courteous as possible. Having obtained 
permission to bring several of her friends to bid him fare- 
well, she persuaded one lady, who was tall and robust, to 
leave her clothes, and assume another dress, which she 
had prepared. When this lady came in, she affected to 
weep ; but when she went out she was perfectly calm. 
This was done that the Earl of Nithsdale might more 
completely personate her, and disguise his own features, 
by holding a handkerchief to his face. Besides this the 
Countess had taken the precaution to paint his eye-brows 
and cheeks, and cover his head with artificial hair. The 
sentinel, suspecting no mischief, officiously opened the 
doors for his prisoner to depart. The Countess followed 
her disguised husband closely, in order to prevent the 
jailers from taking particular observation of his gait. At 
this critical moment, she preserved a remarkable degree 
of calmness and presence of mind. As she walked on, 
she urged the pretended lady to hasten her servant in 



COUNTESS OF NITHSDALE. 277 

coming for her, because she was determined to present a 
petition to the king that night, as the last means of sav- 
ing her husband's life. 

Some friends who were in readiness outside of the 
Tower, received the fugitive, and conveyed him to a place 
of safety. After being concealed a few days in London, 
he assumed the livery of the Venetian ambassador, and 
1 with his retinue to Calais; from whence he tra- 
velled to Eome, where he resided till his death, in 1774. 



16* 



MADAME SPURZHEIM, 

WIFE OF DR. SPURZHEIM. 

Doct. Spitrzheim, who has excited a deeper and more 
universal interest among us, than was ever before accord- 
ed to an individual we had known so recently, found in 
domestic life that perfect happiness, which his virtues de- 
served. He married a widow in Paris, who had three 
daughters. The motive which dictated his choice was 
very characteristic ; he believed she would make a good 
wife, because her character had been perfected by suffer- 
ing. His hopes were fully realized. She was meek, 
unassuming, affectionate and intelligent. She sympa- 
thized in her husband's pursuits, and aided him by her 
uncommon skill in drawing. Many of the illustrations 
he used in his lectures, were the productions of her pencil. 
Her heart was entirely devoted to him, and her watchful 
care was ever with him, a guardian angel protecting his 
health and happiness. It was a common observation how 
remarkably they were adapted to each other. Both of 
them possessed, in an eminent degree, that beautiful kind 
of politeness, which is in reality genuine goodness of 
heart, clothed in its appropriate simplicity of manner. 

While in this country, Doctor Spurzheim often alluded 
to her constant affection, and unremitting attention to his 
welfare. He was troubled with a disease of the heart, 
and an intermitting pulse, which he ascribed to the grief 
occasioned by her death. 



MME, SPURZHEIM. 279 

In his last illness, he said, " This would not have been 
if my wife had been alive, to take care of me, when I 
came home cold and fatigued from my lectures. " 

He died among strangers ; but those strangers were 
his friends ; and he received every attention which re- 
spect and sympathy could suggest. 



LADY COLLING WOOD. 

Lokd Collingwood, the friend and companion of Nel- 
son, resembled the great naval hero in courage and firm- 
ness, but was totally unlike him in his domestic charac- 
ter. His heart was fully satisfied in the affections of his 
wife and children. In the midst of his fame, his fondest 
hope was to be soon released from public duties, and 
allowed to indulge in the tranquil enjoyments of his 
happy home. The quiet haven he so much desired was 
never attained. Almost his whole life was passed on the 
seas; and he died just as his long indulged anticipations 
seemed about to be realized. His letters to his daughters 
are full of practical wisdom, and indicate great warmth 
of parental tenderness. He evidently regarded his wife 
with mingled love and reverence. In one of his letters 
to his children, he says, " Let all your words and all your 
actions mark you gentle. I never knew your mother, — 
your dear, your good mother, — say a harsh, or a hasty 
thing, to any person in my life. Endeavour to imitate 
her." 



MADAME SCHILLER. 

WIFE OF JOHN CHRISTOPHER FREDERIC SCHILLER. 

Frederic Schiller was one of those few master- 
spirits, which in the lapse of ages now and then arise, to 
impart their own activity to human thought, and shed 
fresh light upon the world. 

He himself followed the sublime advice he gave to 
artists ; he " imprinted ideal beauty on all sensible and 
spiritual forms, and cast it silently into everlasting time." 

He was born November, 1759, at Marbach, a small 
town in Wiirtemberg. His father was first a surgeon, 
afterward an officer in the army ; his mother was of 
humble birth, but very intelligent, and fond of poetry ; 
both of his parents were affectionate, sincere, and consci- 
entious. 

The reigning Duke, from respect to the father's worth, 
offered to place the son at his school in Stuttgard, for the 
purpose of studying law. The proposition w T as unwel- 
come to the boy ; who, sanctioned by his parents, had 
fixed his heart upon the ministry ; but fear of offending 
the prince induced a reluctant acquiescence in his plan. 

At this seminary, all the influences around Frederic 
were uncongenial to his free and ardent nature. His ge- 
nius fettered and cramped by the exact machinery of the 
school, — governed by those, whose minds fitted them to 
be his servants, — impatient of bondage, and struggling 
for some little portion of intellectual liberty, — he reminds 



282 



GOOD WIVES 



us of Pegasus chained to the plough, flattering his wings, 
and looking eagerly to the far blue sky, but kept down 
upon the earth by the dull pace of the black ox, to which 
he was fastened. 

This thraldom was ended in his twenty-third year by 
his escape from Stuttgard, " empty in purse and hope." 
For a time, he wrestled with poverty and discourage- 
ment ; but he wrestled with energy that is sure to over- 
come ; and he at last received his share of the patronage 
so liberally bestowed on German talent. A concurrence 
of circumstances led him to become a dramatic author. ; 
but he afterward proved that he was capable of achieving 
greatness in any path to which he directed, his attention. 

His first play, called the Robbers, produced a prodi- 
gious sensation throughout Germany; but Wallenstein, 
written some years after, is deemed his greatest and most 
highly finished production. The people were proud of 
their poet, and showed it with a ready and earnest enthu- 
siasm, that must have gone to his heart. When his 
Maid of Orleans was first represented on the stage at 
Leipzig, at the close of the first act, there arose on all 
sides a shout of, " Long live Frederic Schiller !" accom- 
panied by the sound of trumpets and other military 
music. 

At the conclusion, the spectators crowded round the 
door ; when the poet appeared, they uncovered their 
heads, and respectfully opened an avenue for him to 
pass ; while many held up their children and exclaimed, 
" That is he !" 

Schiller was an unpretending, bashful man ; his prin- 
ciples and his feelings alike forbade him to assume any 
superiority over his fellow-creatures ; but he must have 
been more than human, if he were not gratified by such 



I i: i s,'ii:ll I 1 . 283 

a tribttte of respect, bursting spontaneously from so many 
honest and admiring hearts. 

It is impossible to give, in this volume, Bticta a sketch 
ofthi ' man aa his merit and his fame deserve. Of 

his numerous and celebrated works we pass by the greater 
part, without erven mentioning the titles ; and glance over 
tho events of his life with equal rapidity. His whole 
soul was in literatim ; and therefore his history consists 
principally in progressive st of intellectual improve- 
ment, and extending reputation. 

In a notice of Wieland, he has already been mentioned 
as one of the stars in the brilliant constellation at Wei- 
max. His excellent parents, who, at one time, had feared 
that genius would ruin his prosperity, lived to enjoy the 
fame he so well deserved. 

In 17S0 ho was appointed by the Duchess Amelia, 
Professor of History, at the University of Jena. In the 
February following he married Miss Lengefield, with 
whom he became acquainted at Rudolstadt, a year or 
two before. She was not his first love ; he had pre- 
viously declared an attachment for the daughter of the 
Kammerath Schwann, a bookseller at Manheim : we are 
not informed whether this connexion was relinquished 
from want of constancy, or because his affection was not 
reciprocated. Certain it is that Schiller's heart never 
ceased to yearn for domestic happiness. " To be united 
with a person," said he, " that shares our joys and our 
sorrows, that responds to our feelings, that moulds her- 
self so pliantly, so closely to our humours ; reposing on 
her calm and warm affection, to relax our spirit from a 
thousand distractions, a thousand wild wishes and tumul- 
tuous passions ; to dream away all the bitterness of for- 



284 GOOD WIVES. 

tune, in the bosom of domestic enjoyment; this is the 
true delight of life." 

Some time after his marriage, he writes : " Life is quite 
a different thing by the side of a beloved wife, than so 
forsaken and alone ; even in summer. Beautiful Na- 
ture ! I now for the first time fully enjoy it, live in it. 
The world again clothes itself around me in poetic forms; 
old feelings are again awakening in my breast. What a 
life I am leading here ! I look with a glad mind around 
me ; my heart finds a perennial contentment without it ; 
my spirit so fine, so refreshing a nourishment. My ex- 
istence is settled in harmonious composure ; not strained 
and impassioned, but peaceful and clear. I look to my 
future destiny with a cheerful heart. Now when stand- 
ing at the wished-for goal, I wonder with myself how it 
has all happened, so far beyond my expectations. Fate 
has conquered the difficulties for me ; it has, I may say, 
forced me to the mark. From the future I expect every- 
thing. A few years and I shall live in the full enjoy- 
ment of my spirit ; nay, I think my very youth will be 
renewed ; an inward poetic life will give it me again." 

Of Schiller's wife, but little has been published. We 
only know that Gothe, who had known her from child- 
hood, speaks of her with respect and regard ; and that 
she inspired the author of Wallenstein with a deep and 
abiding passion ; but surely this is praise enough for 
mortal woman. 

When Gothe and Schiller were first introduced, their 
characters acted upon each other with repelling power.' 
Totally unlike in their habits of thought, and wedded to 
different schools of philosophy, there seemed to be no 
point where they could meet in harmony. This gradu- 
ally gave place to hearty admiration of each other ; and 



MME. SCHILLER. 235 

without sacrificing their respective independence of sen- 
timent and opinion, they became warm friends. 

Gothe, describing the progress of their acquaintance, 
Bays, " The first step was now taken ; Schiller's attractive 
powei was great ; he kept all close to him that came 
within his reach. His wife, whom I had loved and val- 
ued since her childhood, did her part to strengthen our 
reciprocal intelligence ; all friends, on both sides, rejoiced 
at it." 

A notice of Schiller is introduced in this volume merely 
to show how mistaken is the idea that genius unfits peo- 
ple for the calm routine of domestic happiness : when 
this greatest of all earthly blessings is changed to a curse, 
the fault is in the heart, not in the mind. 

Schiller possessed genius in its loftiest attributes — and 
he had the temperament that usually accompanies that 
heavenly gift. Earnest, impetuous — restless in a world 
too narrow for his spirit — with a mind exulting in the 
grandeur of its own vast conceptions, yet struggling for a 
more perfect glimpse of that mysterious beauty, which 
God has veiled in clouds — living among magnificent 
visions of thought, and questioning them with fevered 
earnestness of all that had past, and of all that should 
come to the soul of man — such was Frederic Schiller ! 

The cares of real life were a heavy burden to him. 
He says, " My mind is drawn different ways ; I fall 
headlong out of my ideal world, if a hole in my stocking 
remind me of the actual world.'' 

The customs of society were fetters upon his intellec- 
tual freedom ; hence he was always constrained and ill 
at ease in parties. 

To enjoy the " frenzy" of the poet with more intense 
consciousness, he was in the habit of sitting up all night, 



286 GOOD WIVES. 

in a garden-house, with a flask of Rhenish or Cham- 
paign, or a cup of strong coffee, beside hirn, to refresh 
exhausted nature. 

" The neighbours often used to hear him declaiming 
earnestly in the silence of the night ; and whoever watched 
him on such occasions, (a thing easily done from the 
heights on the opposite side of the dell) might see him 
now speaking aloud, and walking swiftly to and fro in 
his chamber, then suddenly throwing himself down in 
his chair and writing." 

Yet this man of vivid and restless genius loved his 
family with deep and constant love. His best happiness 
was in his home. The great world had no charms for 
him; holier sympathies nestled around his heart, and 
brighter visions thronged his mind. The theatre was the 
only public place he visited ; and this not for amusement, 
but for the sake of improvement in the dramatic art. 

In his own family, or among select friends, he was 
affectionate, eloquent, and sportive as a little child. He 
had all the frankness and simplicity which characterize 
the Germans ; and who can say how much of intellec- 
tual greatness may be traced to these qualities ? Truth 
is power. 

Such a man as Schiller could not live to be old. His 
ardent spirit burned away its mortal shrine. Incessant 
literary toil, and the unquietness of a mind eager to pen- 
etrate into all the arcana of the universe, brought on phy- 
sical disease. In 1791, his physicians ordered him to 
abstain from intellectual efforts if he valued life. To one 
of his industrious habits, with a cherished family depend- 
ing on his exertions, it was difficult to obey this com- 
mand. 

The Duke of Holstein and Count Von Schimmelmann, 



MME. SCHILLER. 287 

being informed of his ill health, conferred a pension of a 
thousand crowns, for three years ; upon the stipulation 
that he should be careful of himself, and use every means 
to recover. 

The invalid was partially restored, and returned with 
fresh vigour to his beloved occupations; in the glowing 
light of his imaginary world, weakness and suffering 
were forgotten. But the arrow of death had entered; 
the body sunk under its unequal conflict with the soul. 

He died in the spring of 1805, aged forty-five years 
and some months. A widow, two sons, and two daugh- 
ters survived him. At his request his funeral was pri- 
vate and unostentatious. During his last illness, physical 
suffering produced delirium ; but this passed away ; and 
he was enabled to take a solemn, tranquil farewell of the 
family, who were watching over him with anxious love. 
Being asked how he felt, a few hours before his decease, 
he answered, " Calmer, and calmer." After that, he 
sank into a slumber; from which he awoke, looked up 
brightly, and said, " Many things are growing clear to 
me •/" Then a gentle sleep came over him, which grad- 
ually deepened into eternal silence. 

His mighty spirit has learned the history of its own 
existence. 



The ancients believed that when a remarkably good wife died, 
Proserpine sent a procession of the purest and best spirits to wel- 
come her to another world, and strew the way to Elysium with 
flowers. 



2S8 

LIST OF BOOKS REFERRED TO. 

Thatcher's Military Journal. 
Lady's Museum. 
Classical Dictionary. 

Pulteney's Sketches of the Progress of Botany in England. 
Lives of Painters and Sculptors, by Allan Cunningham. 
Bayle's Biographical Dictionary. 
Plutarch's Lives. 
Memoirs of Lord Collingwood. 
Miss Akin's Court of King James. 
Biographie Universelle 
Dictionaire Historique. 

Memoirs of Lady Fanshawe, written hy herself. 
Memoirs of Mrs. Fletcher, wife of Rev. John Fletcher. 
Akin's Universal Biography. 
Brown's Life of Howard. 
Silliman's Scientific Journal. 
Athenaeum. 

Memoirs of Col. John Hutchinson, by his widow. 
Edinburgh Review. 

Memoirs of Mrs. Judson, by Rev. J. D. Knowles. 
Lavater's Private Journal. 
Memoirs of Lavalette. 
Count Segur's Anecdotes of Frederic. 
Bower's Life of Luther. 
Tischer's Life of Luther. 
Luther's Table Talk. 

Memoirs of Oberlin, Edited by Rev. H. Ware, jr. 
Zenophon's Cyropcedia. 

Johann Jacob Reiskens, von ihm selbst aufgesetzte Lebensbes- 
chreibung. 

Monthly Anthology. 

Oratorum Graecorum. Volumen Primum. Edidit J. J. Reiske. 

Funeral Oration on Dr. Spurzheim, by Dr. Follen. 

Taylor's Historic Survey of German Poetry. 

Winthrop's History of N. England, Edited by Jas. Savage, Esq. 

Life of Frederic Schiller.